Canada: Authorities have detained Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of Chinese tech giant Huawei, who faces extradition to the US on suspicion of circumventing trade sanctions against Iran.
In a statement on Wednesday, Canada’s justice ministry, said Meng was arrested in Vancouver on December 1.
“She is sought for extradition by the United States, and a bail hearing has been set for Friday.” The ministry added it could not provide further details due to a publication ban that was sought by Meng.
The Wall Street Journal reported earlier this year that US authorities are investigating whether Huawei, one of the world’s top makers of telecommunications network equipment violated sanctions on Iran.
Meng is also deputy chairman of the board and the daughter of company founder Ren Zhengfei.
Huawei is one of the largest makers of smartphones. It uses parts from the US, which has sanctions against Iran, and it doesn’t want its parts being used there – so Meng was arrested in Canada on suspicion of circumventing those trade sanctions.
In the worst case scenario Huawei “could lose access to the US parts it’s using to make its smartphones – that’s what happened last year to ZTE, another Chinese company, which paid $892m for violating US sanctions”.
The Friday’s hearing will determine whether Meng will be extradited to the US.
Huawei has been under tough scrutiny in the US, where government national security officials say its alleged close links to the Chinese government make it a security risk.
Its US business has been tightly constrained by worries it could undermine US competitors and that its cellphones and networking equipment, used widely in other countries, could provide Beijing with avenues for espionage.
Despite being essentially barred from the critical US market, Huawei surpassed Apple to become the world’s number two smartphone maker in the second quarter of this year and has market leader Samsung in its sights.
SOURCE: NEWS AGENCIES