U.S. case against Huawei official politically motivated, company says

12 May, 2019, 03:39 | Author: Trevor Moore
  • Huawei CFO Meng Returns to Court as Canada-China Tensions Mount

Her lawyers claimed comments by Trump, who said the charges could be dropped if that would help China trade talks, showed the case was politically motivated.

Meng's detention amounted to an "abuse of process", according to her lawyers, who are seeking to delay USA attempts to extradite her on fraud charges over dealings with Iran. Meng sued the Canadian government in March for allegedly trampling her constitutional rights during her arrest, in an effort to discredit the extradition case.

In addition, Meng's counsel argued there is no evidence she misrepresented to a bank Huawei's relationship with a company operating in Iran called Skycom, thereby putting the bank at risk of violating USA sanctions law, or that the bank relied on her statements to its detriment. The company reiterated that the US -ordered arrest was "an unlawful abuse of process - one guided by political considerations and tactics".

Following her arrest, China detained former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig and Canadian businessman Michael Spavor in what observers saw as retaliation. Those matters must be dealt with before extradition hearings can begin, her defense has said. She's due back in court for eight days, beginning in late September. "To the contrary, it was made clear in court today that business activities by Ms. Meng were conducted openly and transparently with full knowledge of banking officials", Howes said.

Meng's lawyers also secured approval in the hearing to modify her bail terms, allowing her to move from one of her multi-million-dollar properties in Vancouver to another, Bloomberg reported.

The case could take months or even years to resolve, and Meng is living under house arrest at her Vancouver home in the meantime. That means the saga of Ms. Meng, which pitched Canada and China into their worst dispute in decades, will likely drag into next year.

Meng Wanzhou, 47, who faces charges related to Iran sanctions violations, was appearing at a Vancouver courthouse to set a timetable for her upcoming extradition hearing.

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The bank and wire fraud charges do not meet that criteria because Meng is accused of misrepresenting HSBC to engage in transactions that violate US sanctions laws, the lawyers said.

It has also rallied the support of a dozen countries, including Britain, France, Germany and the USA, as well as the EU, NATO and the G7, in its diplomatic feud with China.

Three, the lawyers said Meng's three-hour long detention at the airport on December 1 violated Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

The United States has since accused Meng of, among other things, deceiving four banks to enable Huawei to evade USA sanctions against Iran.

Her arrest at the Vancouver airport set off a diplomatic furor that has had led to the worst relations between Canada and China since the Tiananmen Square massacre in 1989.

Based on the statement, Meng's lawyers made three key disclosures in court. Last week, US prosecutors filed a motion seeking to disqualify one of Huawei's lead defense lawyers, James Cole.

Meng is now free under private guard on $7.4 million bail. China is also blocking imports of the agricultural product canola from Canada.

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