VANCOUVER, Canada: In a case involving Huawei Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou’s bid to prevent her extradition to the United States from Canada, Canadian prosecutor Robert Frater concluded his arguments in favor of her being sent to the United States to be tried.
Meng, 49, is accused of misleading HSBC bank about Huawei’s business dealings in Iran, putting the bank at risk of violating U.S. sanctions.
She was arrested at Vancouver International Airport in December 2018 on a U.S. warrant charging her with bank fraud.
“The lies in Hong Kong are not about risks in Hong Kong. They are about risks primarily in the United States,” Frater said, referring to the ambiguous statements Meng allegedly gave to HSBC officials at a meeting in Hong Kong, which form the basis of the case against her.
Meng, who is under house arrest in Vancouver, has maintained she is innocent and is fighting the extradition. Her legal team is seeking a stay of the proceedings, citing abuse of process.
Defence lawyer Gib van Ert argued that U.S. authorities claiming jurisdiction over Meng’s conduct in Hong Kong was a “plain power grab”.
The British Columbia Supreme Court judge has already heard arguments that alleged that the extradition should be overturned and Meng should be allowed to return to China, due to violations of her rights during her arrest and political interference by former U.S. President Donald Trump.
This week, Meng’s legal team submitted that the U.S. indictment violated international law because the misleading statements in the case did not have a considerable enough connection to the United States.
Meng’s legal team is set to argue on April 26 to overturn the extradition, based upon allegations of misrepresentations in the case. Her case is set to conclude in May.