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Sunday, September 26, 2021

Meng Wanzhou’s defence expected to tackle reputational risk in extradition hearing

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VANCOUVER — A fifth defence lawyer on Meng Wanzhou’s legal team is expected to step up to bat today to make a fresh set of legal arguments in the Huawei executive’s formal extradition hearing.

Scott Fenton is expected to argue in the B.C. Supreme Court that the United States has failed to present sufficient evidence that Meng caused risk of reputational damage, financial loss or any other deprivation to international bank HSBC.

His arguments are expected to parallel those made by another member of Meng’s legal team yesterday that there’s no evidence that a PowerPoint presentation Meng gave in 2013 caused the bank to violate U.S. sanctions against Iran.

Meng was arrested at Vancouver’s airport in 2018 at the request of the United States, where she is wanted on fraud charges that both she and Huawei deny.

A lawyer for Canada’s attorney general, who represents the United States in the case, has accused her of giving an “artful” presentation intended to mislead HSBC into believing Huawei didn’t control another company that did business in Iran.

While arguments in the case are expected to wrap up today or tomorrow, it could be months before the judge rules on whether to recommend that Meng be surrendered to the United States to face the charges.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 17, 2021.

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