Wanzhou Meng, who is also the deputy chair of Huawei’s board and the daughter of company founder Ren Zhengfei, was arrested in Vancouver at the request of American law enforcement authorities.
Ian McLeod, Justice Department spokesman said in a statement to The Globe and Mail : “She is sought for extradition by the United States, and a bail hearing has been set for Friday.”
“As there is a publication ban in effect, we cannot provide any further detail at this time. The ban was sought by Ms. Meng.” He added.
A Canadian law-enforcement source with knowledge of the arrest stated that the US is alleging that Meng tried to evade the American embargo against Iran, without providing any further details. The source was granted anonymity by The Globe, due to them not being authorised to speak publicly about the arrest.
US prosecutors in New York have been investigating whether Huawei violated U.S. sanctions in relation to Iran, which was first reported by the Wall Street Journal in April. In a statement to The Globe, Huawei stated that Meng faces “unspecified charges in the Eastern District of New York.” The statement also said that she was arrested when she was transferring flights in Canada.
“The company has been provided with very little information regarding the charges and is not aware of any wrongdoing by Ms. Meng. The company believes the Canadian and U.S. legal systems will ultimately reach a just conclusion,” Huawei stated, and added the company “complies with all applicable laws and regulations where it operates, including applicable export control and sanction laws.”
The Chinese embassy in Ottawa strongly protested the arrest of Meng, saying she had not violated Canadian or US law and demanded her immediate release.
“The Chinese side has lodged stern representations with the U.S. and Canadian side, urged them to immediately correct the wrongdoing and restore the personal liberty of Ms. Meng Wanzhou. We will closely follow the development of the issue and take all measures to resolutely protect the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese citizens.” said the embassy in a statement.
Chinese Ambassador Lu Shaye and four high-ranking members of the National People’s Congress also cancelled a scheduled appearance before the House of Commons foreign affairs committee.