Citing Trump risk, Huawei CFO opposes TV broadcast of her case - TechCentral

Citing Trump risk, Huawei CFO opposes TV broadcast of her case

Meng Wanzhou

Lawyers for Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou are opposing the broadcast of her extradition proceedings in Canada, saying it’d raise the risk of US President Donald Trump muddying her case.

Televising the hearings “amplifies the risk that the president of the United States will once again intervene in the respondent’s case, or harbour resentments, that are both threatening and intimidating”, her defence said in a court submission.

Earlier this year, Trump made conflicting statements on whether he might try to intervene in the US justice department’s efforts to extradite Meng in order to boost a China trade deal. Her defence has used that to argue that her case is politicized and she should be freed.

Meng, eldest daughter of Huawei’s billionaire founder Ren Zhengfei, was virtually unknown publicly until her arrest last December at Vancouver’s airport at the behest of US officials. The US accuses Meng of tricking banks into conducting transactions that violated sanctions on Iran.

Meng deserves the court’s protection, her lawyers said, because the media glare on her case has been “overwhelming”.

“Her every move is scrutinised by the media, from her legal submissions to the clothes she wears.”

Drawing more attention from Trump or US officials would place undue pressure on how Meng defends herself and could sway her fight to be freed, they said.

Meng is set to appear in court on 20 January for the formal start of extradition hearings.  — Reported by Natalie Obiko Pearson, (c) 2019 Bloomberg LP

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