Crime & Justice

Huawei: US case against Meng Wanzhou built on lies

Toronto, Jul 8 (EFE).- Internal documents from HSBC bank show that prosecutors in the United States lied to Canadian authorities to secure the arrest of Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou, an executive with the Chinese technology giant’s Canada unit said Thursday.

Meng, the daughter of Huawei founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei, was detained by Canada on Dec. 1, 2018, during a stopover in Vancouver en route from Hong Kong to Mexico City.

She is accused of violating US sanctions on Iran by misleading banks about the business her company allegedly conducted in that country through a subsidiary called Skycom.

But the documents handed over by HSBC prove that officials at the London-based bank were fully aware of Huawei’s connection to Skycom, Huawei Canada’s vice president for corporate affairs, Alykhan Velshi, told Efe.

With the revelations of the emails from HSBC, the US case against Meng “has collapsed,” Velshi said.

Canadian Judge Heather Holmes is now weighing whether to allow Meng’s attorneys to present the HSBC documents as evidence as the executive fights a US request for her extradition.

The materials “show that Huawei’s control over Skycom was not kept from senior HSBC executives, that the continuing nature of Skycom’s business with Huawei in Iran was not kept from HSBC executives and that internal HSBC risk assessments were made based on knowledge of the true facts,” Huawei Canada said in a statement.

“The only fraud” is the one the US has perpetrated at Meng’s expense, Velshi told Efe.

Meng, now 49, was released on bail 10 days after her arrest and resides with her family in one of the two mansions she owns in Vancouver. She is required to wear a GPS ankle bracelet and pay for her own 24/7 surveillance.

After Meng’s arrest, China froze diplomatic and trade relations with Canada and accused Ottawa of violating the human rights of one of its citizens.

Beijing also detained two Canadian citizens – former diplomat Michael Kovrig and businessman Michael Spavor – on allegations of endangering China’s national security.

The two men were tried in March on charges of acquiring and selling state secrets to “foreign forces,” but China has yet to announce a verdict or sentence.

The trials took place behind closed doors and Canada has repeatedly denounced the arrest and prosecution of Kovrig and Spavor as “arbitrary.” EFE


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