Chinese technology executive Meng Wanzhou appeared in a Vancouver courtroom Wednesday for the first hearing in an extradition process that will put Canada squarely in the middle of a standoff between the United States and China.
Wednesday’s proceedings were short and focused primarily on scheduling. The hearing that will determine whether Meng, the chief financial officer for Huawei Technologies, will be extradited to the United States to face charges related to alleged violations of U.S. sanctions on Iran will start May 8, the court ruled.
But Meng’s lawyer, Richard Peck, hinted at her defense team’s strategy, saying comments by President Trump show her case is politically motivated.
Last week, her team issued a statement objecting to the extradition process and what it called the “political nature” of the charges.
“The President of the United States has repeatedly stated that he would interfere in Ms. Meng’s case if he thought it would assist the U.S. negotiations with China over a trade deal,” the statement said.
The statement also suggested that her team would argue that the allegations against Meng constitute a crime in the United States but not in Canada. It said this was “an affront to the foundational extradition principle of double constitutionality.”
Meng has also filed a separate civil suit against the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the Canada Border Services Agency and the federal government, alleging that her constitutional rights were violated when she was detained.―Washington Post