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The US government looks to extradite HUAWEI CFO arrested in Canada

The U.S. government has until the end of January to submit a formal request for extradition.

Published onJanuary 22, 2019

The HUAWEI logo.

In a statement released earlier today and reported by Reuters, the U.S. Justice Department said it will pursue the extradition of Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou.

The U.S. must submit an extradition request to Canada for the HUAWEI executive by January 30. A Canadian court then decides whether there’s enough evidence to warrant an extradition. If there’s enough evidence, the Canadian minister of justice issues a formal order of extradition.

HUAWEI chairman Liang Hua said the company is closely following the situation and wants a quick resolution. The executive also said HUAWEI has not had direct contact with authorities on the matter.

Canadian authorities arrested Meng in Vancouver, British Columbia in December 2018. The arrest was reportedly made at the request of the U.S. government, which alleged that Meng was trying to circumvent the current U.S. trade embargo with Iran.

Less than a week after her arrest, Meng paid the 10 million Canadian dollars ($7.5 million) for her bail. Meng has since worn an electronic bracelet that lets the Canadian authorities keep tabs on her whereabouts.

The situation with Meng is a microcosm of the soured relations between HUAWEI and the U.S. government. Federal lawmakers and departments have been critical of HUAWEI, claiming that the company’s phones and telecommunications products could be used by the Chinese government to spy on U.S. citizens. HUAWEI has continually denied these claims.

Most recently, the U.S. Justice Department might pursue a criminal case against HUAWEI for alleged theft of trade secrets. Compounding matters, a HUAWEI employee was arrested in Poland for allegedly spying on the Chinese government’s behalf. HUAWEI fired the employee a few days after the arrest.

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