U.S. ac­cuses Huawei CFO of Iran sanc­tions cover-up; hear­ing ad­journed

Stabroek News - - WORLD NEWS -

VAN­COU­VER/LON­DON, (Reuters) - Huawei Tech­nolo­gies Co Ltd’s chief fi­nan­cial of­fi­cer faces U.S. ac­cu­sa­tions that she cov­ered up her com­pany’s links to a firm that tried to sell equip­ment to Iran de­spite sanc­tions, a Cana­dian prose­cu­tor said yesterday, ar­gu­ing against giv­ing her bail while she awaits ex­tra­di­tion.

The case against Meng Wanzhou, who is also the daugh­ter of the founder of Huawei, stems from a 2013 Reuters re­port https://www.reuters.com/ar­ti­cle/ukhuawei-sky­com/ex­clu­sive-huawei-cfo-linked-to-firmthat-of­fered-hp-gear-to-iranidUKBRE90U0CA20130131 about the com­pany’s close ties to Hong Kong-based Sky­com Tech Co Ltd, which at­tempted to sell U.S. equip­ment to Iran de­spite U.S. and Euro­pean Union bans, the prose­cu­tor told a Van­cou­ver court.(https://reut.rs/2QlvzXW)

U.S. pros­e­cu­tors ar­gue that Meng was not truth­ful to banks who asked her about links be­tween the two firms, the court heard on Fri­day. If ex­tra­dited to the United States, Meng would face charges of con­spir­acy to de­fraud mul­ti­ple fi­nan­cial in­sti­tu­tions, the court heard, with a max­i­mum sen­tence of 30 years for each charge.

No de­ci­sion was reached af­ter nearly six hours of ar­gu­ments and counter-ar­gu­ments, and the hear­ing was ad­journed un­til Mon­day 10:00 a.m. Pa­cific Time (1800 GMT).

Meng, 46, was ar­rested in Canada on Dec. 1 at the re­quest of the United States. The ar­rest was on the same day that U.S. Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump met in Ar­gentina with China’s Xi Jin­ping to look for ways to re­solve an es­ca­lat­ing trade war be­tween the world’s two largest economies.

The news of her ar­rest has roiled stock mar­kets and drawn con­dem­na­tion from Chi­nese au­thor­i­ties, al­though Trump and his top eco­nomic ad­vis­ers have down­played its im­por­tance to trade talks af­ter the two lead­ers agreed to a truce.

Fri­day’s court hear­ing was in­tended to de­cide on whether Meng can post bail or if she should be kept in de­ten­tion.

The prose­cu­tor op­posed bail, ar­gu­ing that Meng was a high flight risk with few ties to Van­cou­ver and that her fam­ily’s wealth would mean than even a multi-mil­lion-

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