Canada to start extradition process of Huawei CFO

Canada to start extradition process of Huawei CFO

The Canadian government, as expected, on Friday approved extradition proceedings against the chief financial officer of Huawei Technologies Co Ltd, prompting a furious reaction from China.

"During the extradition hearing, the Crown will make its detailed arguments in its submissions to the Court, where evidence will be filed and become part of the public record", Canada said in the statement.

The Department of Justice said in a statement that the decision followed a "thorough and diligent review" of the evidence in the case.

Friday marks the three-month anniversary of Meng's arrest, and Canada had until midnight to decide whether the extradition hearing should proceed, the CBC reports.

The document also said the extradition hearing is not a trial and it won't render a verdict of guilt or innocence.

Canada's relationship with China - its second-biggest trading partner - has deteriorated since Meng's December arrest in Vancouver. If history is any guide, the odds are high that she will be extradited in the end.

Canadian Justice Minister David Lametti declined to comment.

Meng is the daughter of Huawei founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei.

The government stated "Canada is a country governed by the rule of law".

"This is an affront to the foundational extradition principle of double criminality", the statement said. The U.S. alleges she lied to banks to trick them into processing transactions for Huawei that potentially violated Iran trade sanctions.

The Chinese government has demanded Meng's immediate release and has criticized Canada for acting on what it sees as a politically motivated extradition request by the USA, but Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has maintained his country is simply following the rule of law.

"The criminal activity alleged in this indictment goes back 10 years and goes all the way back to the top of the company", Acting U.S. Attorney General Matthew Whitaker said earlier this year. The company's US branch is also accused of stealing trade secrets and equipment from cellphone provider T-Mobile USA. The Chinese embassy in Canada said the decision to arrest Ms. Meng in December amounts to a "political conspiracy" to undermine the telecom giant and has argued Prime Minister Justin Trudeau could easily have intervened to stop this from happening. He was originally sentenced in 2016 to a 15-year term, but the court delivered the new sentence after reconsidering his case.

Meng will remain on bail and subject to her existing conditions as previously set by the court.

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