A Canadian court has granted bail to Huawei Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Meng Wanzhou, who was arrested in Vancouver on December 1, and could face fraud charges in connection with alleged violations of sanctions against Iran. However, she has denied any wrongdoing.
The Huawei CFO’s bail has been set at Can$10 million. Other conditions include round-the-clock surveillance, surrendering all travel documents and wearing an electronic ankle tag. She faces extradition to the United States in connection to the charges against her, and could face a 30-year prison sentence if found guilty.
Wanzhou’s arrest has taken place in the backdrop of a bitter trade dispute between China and the United States. A truce was eventually reached, but that could be derailed because of the Huawei CFO’s detainment. Beijing has already responded to the development by banning the import and sale of most iPhone models in China.
Perhaps in an attempt to diffuse the situation, US President Donald Trump has announced he could be willing to intervene.
“Whatever’s good for this country, I would do,” said President Trump, adding, “if I think it’s good for what will be certainly the largest trade deal ever made – which is a very important thing – what’s good for national security , I would certainly intervene if I thought it was necessary.”
However, matters are already escalating.
In what seems to be a response to Wanzhou’s arrest, former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig has been detained in China. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said Ottawa is in direct contact with Chinese authorities regarding the case, adding that this development is being taken “very seriously.”
Wanzhou’s next court hearing has been set for February 6, 2019.