Judge sides with Huawei CFO on some claims but does not dismiss U.S. extradition case

In this news, we discuss the Judge sides with Huawei CFO on some claims but does not dismiss U.S. extradition case.

VANCOUVER / TORONTO (Reuters) – A judge has blocked an attempt by the Attorney General of Canada to have parts of the arguments of Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou dismissed in the case to extradite him to the United States, according to a decision made Thursday.

However, Holmes sided with the attorney general in agreeing that Meng’s arguments were not strong enough to warrant an immediate dismissal of the case.

The ruling comes as a week-long testimony is pending before the BC Supreme Court in a different part of the same extradition case.

Meng’s claim that the United States has distorted evidence of alleged fraud in its official extradition request to Canada has an “air of reality,” Associate Chief Justice Heather Holmes wrote in her decision dated 28. October.

She also agreed that Meng had the right to cite additional evidence in the record, “to a limited extent.”

“Some of this evidence is realistically capable of challenging the reliability” of the United States’ extradition request, Holmes said.

Attorney General David Lametti’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Meng, 48, was arrested at Vancouver International Airport in December 2018 while on a layover to Mexico. The United States has charged her with bank fraud, accusing her of misleading HSBC about Huawei Technologies Co Ltd’s business dealings in Iran and causing the bank to break U.S. sanctions.

She said she was innocent and is fighting the charges in Vancouver, where she is under house arrest.

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Canada’s attempt to get part of Huawei CFO’s case against US extradition rejected

Meng’s arrest made diplomatic relations between Ottawa and Beijing difficult. Shortly after his detention, China arrested Canadian citizens Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig for espionage.

ROUTINE DISCUSSION

In witness testimony Thursday, a border official told the court that Meng’s imminent arrival at a Canadian airport two years ago meant discussions about how best to apprehend him, including potential violations. civil rights, were to be interrupted.

Scott Kirkland, an officer with the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), told the court on Wednesday he was concerned about allegations of potential civil rights violations if the agency intercepted and questioned Meng before his arrest by Canadian police.

But he did not convey this concern to his superiors, in part because they had less than an hour before Meng’s flight landed to decide how to handle his interception, knowing that the United States had a arrest warrant against her.

“It was a rushed discussion, we had very little time to prepare for this flight,” Kirkland said, as he was questioned by defense lawyer Mona Duckett.

Duckett questioned Kirkland’s explanation that part of the reason the CBSA intercepted Meng before the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) arrested him was because she feared she might represent a risk to national security.

“Nothing in this review sheds light on national security,” Duckett said, referring to the nearly three-hour period the CBSA investigated Meng before his arrest. “There wasn’t an iota of evidence to support a national security issue.”

“That’s right,” Kirkland said.

Meng’s lawyers have argued that abuse of process occurred in the nearly three hours between the time she was intercepted by CBSA officers and her arrest by the RCMP, during which time she was not arrested. no legal representation.

The officer who arrested her, RCMP Constable Winston Yep, was the first witness to begin the week-long testimony. Yep insisted the RCMP stayed in their lane and did not order the CBSA to investigate Meng.

The witness’s testimony focuses on the second of three branches of abuse of process that Meng’s lawyers say took place, particularly during his arrest.

Canadian government prosecutors have attempted to prove that Meng’s arrest was in accordance with the book, and any breach of due process should not affect the validity of his extradition.

Meng’s extradition hearings are expected to end in April 2021, although the possibility of appeals means the case could drag on for years.

Reporting by Moira Warburton in Toronto and Tessa Vikander in Vancouver; Additional reporting by David Ljunggren in Ottawa; Edited by Denny Thomas, Jonathan Oatis and Rosalba O’Brien

Original © Thomson Reuters

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