China's Huawei Technologies CFO arrested in Canada, faces extradition to US
06 December, 2018, 06:56 | Author: Mary Valdez
Chinese telecom equipment giant Huawei's Chief Financial Officer Sabrina Meng Wanzhou has been detained by Canadian authorities at the request of the United States government, reportedly on suspicion that she violated USA trade sanctions with Iran.
In 2013, Reuters revealed that Meng served on the board of Skycom Tech, a Hong Kong-based firm that attempted to sell embargoed computer equipment to Iran's Mobile Telecommunication Co, in violation of trade sanctions.
The US Department of Justice is said to have been looking into Huawei's dealings with Iran for months now.
Ms Meng is one of Huawei's top executives and its deputy chairman, as well as Mr Zhengfei's daughter.
This story is developing.
He said Meng is facing unidentified accusations from the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of NY.
In 2017, ZTE pleaded guilty in US federal court to evading USA embargoes on Iran, by buying American tech parts, incorporating them into ZTE equipment, then illegally shipping them to Iran.
Like ZTE, Huawei relies in part on U.S. technology imports for its products, and per USA export regulations, those products are in turn prohibited from being exported to Iran and other restricted nations.
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"The company has been provided very little information regarding the charges and is not aware of any wrongdoing by Ms Meng".
United States stock futures dropped sharply on the news, which has presented a new twist in sensitive trade negotiations between Washington and Beijing.
She was arrested December 1 after the U.S. Department of Justice in April opened an investigation into whether the telecommunications giant sold gear to Iran despite sanctions on exports to the region.
This November, New Zealand's government banned its major telecommunications company Spark from using Huawei's equipment, which is described to "have a serious national security risk".
In 2016, the Commerce Department sought information in regards to Huawei possibly sending US technology to Syria and North Korea as well.
The news of the arrest broke today.
The U.S.is anxious about the extent to which Chinese-made equipment is used in the telecommunications sectors of countries that host American military bases.
Skycom tried to evade USA sanctions against Iran and sell Hewlett-Packard computers to the country's largest mobile phone operator in 2010.
Huawei and the Chinese consulate general in Vancouver could not be reached for comment on Wednesday afternoon.
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