Canadian court frees Huawei CFO on bail


International | Written by : Suryaa Desk| Updated:


Canadian court frees Huawei CFO on bail

A Canadian court has granted bail to Chinese tech company Huawei's Chief Financial Officer (CFO), who has been accused of helping the firm dodge American sanctions on Iran, while she awaits a hearing on extradition to the US.

Meng Wanzhou's bail on Tuesday night comes after three days of hearings, the Guardian reported.

Meng, 46, was arrested in Vancouver on December 1 at the request of American authorities.

Meng spent more than a week in custody and cited her poor health - including previous cancer surgery and difficulty eating solid foods - as grounds for bail.

In granting her release, Justice William Ehrcke of the Supreme Court outlined 15 provisions including Meng submitting to constant surveillance and wearing a GPS tracking device, surrendering both her passports and providing a bond of C$10 million (US $7 million). 

She is also subject to a curfew between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m.

Government lawyers had pushed for house arrest but she will remain in her Vancouver home pending the extradition hearing, with significant travel restrictions.

The decision by the court in Vancouver on Tuesday came as US President Donald Trump said in an interview that he would intervene in the case if it would serve national security interests or help close a trade deal with China, the Guardian said.

It also follows news that former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig, who previously served as political lead for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's 2016 visit to Hong Kong, has been detained in China. 

Meng is a high-profile executive at Huawei, one of the world's biggest makers of smartphones and networking equipment. In addition to her role as CFO, she also serves as deputy chairperson of the company's board.

According to Canadian prosecutors, the US has alleged that Meng helped Huawei get around American sanctions on Iran by telling financial institutions that a company subsidiary, Skycom, was a separate and unaffiliated company.

She faces "serious charges of fraud" in the US involving "millions of dollars", where she could receive substantial jail time if convicted.

The US has not yet submitted a formal request for Meng's extradition. 

If no formal notice is given within 60 days she will be released. She is due back in court on February 6, 2019.