News: Huawei CFO to appear in Canada court for final phase of extradition hearings.
VANCOUVER (Reuters) – Huawei Technologies Co Ltd. CFO Meng Wanzhou will appear in a Canadian court on Monday as their U.S. extradition proceedings enter the final stage of arguments leading to a final hearing in May.
Meng, 49, was arrested at Vancouver International Airport in December 2018 on a US arrest warrant for misleading HBSC for misleading Huawei’s dealings in Iran and for causing the bank to violate US sanctions.
She has since fought against house arrest in Vancouver and has declared she was innocent.
After two years of legal proceedings, Meng’s case is now entering its final stage, which will result in a decision on extradition by Associate Chief Justice Heather Holmes at the British Columbia Supreme Court pending approval from the Federal Justice Minister.
Starting Monday, the court will hear arguments about allegations that Canadian and US authorities made legal misconduct during Meng’s initial questioning and arrest that their lawyers believed should invalidate their extradition.
Witness statements on these allegations, which were closed in December 2020.
Meng’s team previously argued that extradition should be refused due to the alleged political interference of then-US President Donald Trump in their case.
Trump told Reuters in December 2018 that he would intervene in the case if it served national security interests or helped to conclude a trade deal with China.
Canadian prosecutors representing the federal government claim that appropriate procedures were followed. They have argued that now that Trump is no longer president, his comments are controversial and that their influence is best judged by a politician rather than a judge.
The fall has caused a freeze in relations between Ottawa and Beijing. Shortly after Meng’s arrest, China arrested two Canadians – Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig – for espionage, which Canada has called retaliation.
On Thursday, China’s Global Times reported that the trial of Spavor and Kovrig was “soon”, citing an anonymous source. The Global Times is published by the People’s Daily, the official newspaper of the ruling Chinese Communist Party.
The hearings are expected to close in May, but the potential for appeals from both sides means the case could drag on for years.
Reporting from Moira Warburton in Vancouver; Adaptation by Denny Thomas and Sonya Hepinstall
Original Source © Reuters