Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Former UCLA researcher sentenced for snooping in celebrity files

A former researcher at UCLA’s school of medicine was sentenced to four months in federal prison Tuesday for illegally reading the confidential medical files of celebrities and other high-profile patients.

Huping Zhou, who pleaded guilty to four misdemeanor counts earlier this year, was the first person in the country to be sentenced to prison for such an offense, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles.

Zhou, 47, began snooping in patient files after he was put on notice in 2003 that he was about to be  fired from his job as researcher, prosecutors said.

There is no evidence that Zhou, a licensed cardiothoracic surgeon in China, attempted to sell any of the information he accessed.

Over the years, UCLA Medical Center has fired several employees for peeking at confidential medical records for such prominent patients as Tom Cruise and Farrah Fawcett.

-- Scott Glover

Comments () | Archives (0)


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...


About L.A. Now
L.A. Now is the Los Angeles Times’ breaking news section for Southern California. It is produced by more than 80 reporters and editors in The Times’ Metro section, reporting from the paper’s downtown Los Angeles headquarters as well as bureaus in Costa Mesa, Long Beach, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, Riverside, Ventura and West Los Angeles.
Have a story tip for L.A. Now?
Please send to newstips@latimes.com
Can I call someone with news?
Yes. The city desk number is (213) 237-7847.


Get Alerts on Your Mobile Phone

Sign me up for the following lists: