Attorney general says HSBC evidence isn't relevant to Meng's extradition case

·2 min read

VANCOUVER — Lawyers for Canada's attorney general are urging a B.C. Supreme Court judge to dismiss Meng Wanzhou's application to submit new evidence in her extradition case.

Robert Frater says the Huawei chief financial officer is asking the judge to weigh the evidence in a way that is appropriate for her fraud trial, not her extradition hearing.

He says the threshold for determining if new evidence is relevant to an extradition case is high and it must demonstrate that the requesting state's evidence is manifestly unreliable.

He says the evidence proposed by the defence doesn't meet that threshold.

Meng's team recently obtained the evidence from her alleged victim HSBC through a court agreement in Hong Kong.

The documents include internal email chains and spreadsheets that Meng's team argues show senior executives knew more about Huawei's control over another company that did business in Iran than U.S. prosecutors claim.

Meng was arrested at Vancouver's airport in 2018 at the request of U.S. officials based on allegations she lied to HSBC about Huawei's relationship with Skycom, putting the bank at risk of violating U.S. sanctions against Iran — charges that both she and Huawei deny.

In a summary of the case against Meng, U.S. prosecutors say a senior HSBC executive would testify at a trial that Meng allegedly misled the bank about the corporate relationship.

Frater says Meng's team is asking the extradition judge to weigh that testimony against the new evidence, effectively asking the court to weigh an incomplete and inconsistent body of evidence in support of alternate inferences.

Associate Chief Justice Heather Holmes has already dismissed another application from Meng's team to admit evidence because it did not meet the appropriate threshold and Frater says she should do the same again.

"Ultimate reliability is for the trier of fact, not this court. Our friends are really trying to make you consider ultimate reliability and you should reject their invitation to do that, as you've done in the previous applications."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 30, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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