News World Huawei CFO suing Canada and agencies

Huawei CFO suing Canada and agencies

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The arrest of Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou has caused consternation in China. Photo: CCTV
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An executive of Chinese tech giant Huawei is suing the Canadian government, its border agency and the national police force, saying they detained, searched and interrogated her before telling her she was under arrest.

Lawyers for Meng Wanzhou said Sunday they filed a notice of civil claim in the British Columbia Supreme Court. Canada arrested Meng, the daughter of Huawei’s founder, at the request of the US in December.

She is wanted on fraud charges that she misled banks about the company’s business dealings in Iran.

The suit 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.

Meng is out on bail and living in Vancouver, awaiting extradition proceedings.

On Friday, Canadian Justice Department officials gave the go-ahead for her extradition proceedings to begin. Meng is due in court Wednesday to set a date for the proceedings to start, which could take months or even years.

Meng’s arrest set off a diplomatic furore and severely strained Canadian relations with China. Beijing has accused Washington of a politically motivated attempt to hurt the company.

China duly detained former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig and entrepreneur Michael Spavor 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 previously handed down.