Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou sues Canadian government, RCMP and CBSA
|globalnews.ca 03 Mar 2019 at 12:12|
VANCOUVER – The defence team for Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou has filed a notice of civil claim alleging “serious violations” of her constitutional rights.
The suit filed with the B.C. Supreme Court on Friday is against members of the Canadian Border Services Agency, the RCMP and the federal government.
It alleges that instead of immediately arresting her, authorities interrogated Meng “under the guise of a routine customs” examination and used the opportunity to “compel her to provide evidence and information.”
The suit alleges Canada Border Service Agency agents seized her electronic devices, obtained passwords and unlawfully viewed the contents and intentionally failed to adviser her of the true reasons for her detention. The suit said only after three hours was she told she was under arrest and had right to counsel.
The allegations have not been proven in court and the CBSA, RCMP and the attorney general’s office did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
On Friday, the Canadian Department of Justice gave the go-ahead for an extradition case against Meng, marking the formal start of the high-profile process that has put Canada in an uncomfortable position between the United States and China.
The U.S. Department of Justice has laid out 13 criminal counts of conspiracy, fraud and obstruction against Huawei and Meng, who is the daughter of company founder Ren Zhengfei.
Meng is out on bail and living in Vancouver awaiting extradition proceedings.
It could be several months or even years before her case is resolved.
Meng’s arrest set off a diplomatic furor and severely strained Canadian relations with China. Beijing has accused Washington of a politically motivated attempt to hurt a potential competitor to U.S. technology vendors.
China detained former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig and Canadian entrepreneur Michael Spavor on Dec. 10 in an apparent attempt to pressure Canada to release Meng.
A Chinese court also sentenced a Canadian to death in a sudden retrial, overturning a 15-year prison term handed down earlier. Kovrig and Spavor haven’t had access to a lawyer or to their families since being arrested.
Messages left for the Canadian government, the Canada Border Services Agency and Royal Canadian Mounted Police were not immediately returned.