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Meng Wanzhou: Huawei chief executive can be extradited, Canada says
Canada allows extradition hearing against Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou to proceed
Author

04 March, 2019

Considering that Meng Wanzhou is the daughter of the company's founder Ren Zhengfei, it's scrutiny and global attention that the company could now do without.

Meng, now under house arrest after being freed on bail, is awaiting extradition proceedings in Vancouver, after the Canadian government said it would allow an extradition hearing to proceed against her.

On Dec. 1, 2018, Canada arrested the daughter of Huawei's founder at the request of the U.S.at Vancouver International Airport.

Canadian authorities arrested her at the behest of the US Justice Department. A separate case involves Huawei allegedly stealing intellectual property associated with a phone testing robot developed by T-Mobile.

It could be years though before she is ever sent to the United States, since Canada's slow-moving justice system allows many decisions to be appealed.

Meng, who is now under house arrest, will appear in court on March 6 in Vancouver.

As a final step, Canada's Justice Minister, David Lametti, will need to determine whether to extradite Meng.

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Currently, the United States is getting a 25 per cent tariff on $50 billion worth of goods from China in mostly technology. The U.S. has charged Huawei with lying about violating sanctions against Iran and with stealing trade secrets.

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"An extradition hearing is not a trial nor does it render a verdict of guilt or innocence", the Canadian justice department said.

China had "solemnly protested" to the Canadian authorities for Ms Meng's release, and called on the United States to drop its arrest warrant and extradition request, Lu added.

China is furious over the U.S. charges against Meng, saying that they are the product of "strong political motivations" and an attempt to undermine its flagship telecom. Trudeau had previously said the Canadian government could not intervene in Meng's case, leading Chinese officials to call his approach inconsistent.

Ottawa rejects Beijing calls to release Ms. Meng, saying it can not interfere with the judiciary.

While the hearing authority handed out on Friday could prompt the beginning of extradition procedures, experts pointed out that it could take a lot of time before Meng is delivered to the United States. While the detentions have been widely regarded as Beijing's retaliation for the arrest of the Huawei executive, Chinese authorities have denied the allegations, insisting that the two men posed a threat to national security.

Brock University professor Charles Burton, a former Canadian diplomat who served two postings in China, said Beijing was likely to retaliate further. "Extradition in Canada is guided by the Extradition Act, global treaties and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which enshrines constitutional principles of fairness and due process", Canada's Justice Department said.

Trump said he would consider intervening in the case against Meng if it would be in the interest of US national security or help forge a trade deal with Beijing.


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