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Huawei finance boss Meng Wanzhou charged by United States 'had seven passports'

08 December 2018

Earlier on Friday, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said neither Canada nor the United States provided China any evidence that Meng had broken any law in the two countries, and demanded her release.

A senior executive of Chinese tech giant Huawei is facing allegations of fraud by using a subsidiary to violate US trade sanctions against Iran in a case that shook world stock markets this week.

Meng is accused to have previously insisted the two were separate companies.

Meng's lawyer, David Martin, disputed the prosecutor's call to deny bail, saying, "The fact a person has worked hard and has extraordinary resources can not be a factor that would exclude them from bail".

The company has said it is not aware of any wrongdoing by Meng and her lawyer, David Martin, told the B.C. Supreme Court no charge or indictment has been filed against his client, just a warrant.

Chinese media has blamed her arrest on U.S. efforts to stop its global expansion, while Huawei said it had "very little information" about the case but was "not aware of any wrongdoing".

Huawei's chief financial officer faces charges over an alleged conspiracy to defraud banking institutions. It's alleged that they did not know that they were in effect doing business with Iran and could have faced severe financial consequences, Gibb-Carsley said.

Canadian prosecutor John Gibb-Carsley said that the telecoms giant used a subsidiary, Hong Kong-based firm Skycom, to do business with Iran, bypassing U.S. sanctions.

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He said his client would not flee because going against a court order would humiliate and embarrass her father, Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei.

Meng was arrested on December 1 while she was transferring flights at YVR.

She is specifically accused of lying to U.S. banks about the use of a covert subsidiary to sell to Iran in breach of sanctions. The court heard she was en route from Hong Kong to Mexico.

Meng appeared in a Vancouver court on Friday for a bail hearing.

CNN, quoting an unnamed official, said the United States saw the arrest as providing leverage in US-China trade talks - although White House trade advisor Peter Navarro has denied any link to the dialogue. The Trump administration says they benefit from improper subsidies and market barriers.

USA and Asian stock markets tumbled after news of Meng's arrest as it was seen to cause another flare-up in tensions between Washington and Beijing. She's likely his heir apparent. That was about six years after the company was founded to sell phone switches. Chinese Commerce Ministry spokesman Gao Feng said China is confident it can reach a deal during the 90 days that Trump agreed to suspend a scheduled increase in USA import taxes on $200 billion worth of Chinese products.

Earlier this week, Canadian officials said Ottawa was continuing to review Huawei's technology for use in upcoming fifth generation networks.

The U.S. has led a charge to ban the use of Huawei products among its allies, particularly the Five Eyes intelligence-sharing network that also includes Canada, Australia, Britain and New Zealand.

Huawei finance boss Meng Wanzhou charged by United States 'had seven passports'