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Chinese executive facing US extradition appears in court

AP  |  Vancouver 

A Canadian urged a court to deny to a Chinese at the heart of a case that is shaking up US-relations and worrying global financial markets.

Meng Wanzhou, the giant and daughter of its founder, was detained at the request of the US during a layover at the airport last Saturday -- the same day that Presidents and of agreed over dinner to a 90-day ceasefire in a trade dispute that threatens to disrupt global commerce.

The US alleges that used a Hong Kong shell company to sell equipment in in violation of US sanctions.

It also says that Meng and misled American banks about its business dealings in

The surprise arrest, already denounced by Beijing, raises doubts about whether the trade truce will hold and whether the world's two biggest economies can resolve the complicated issues that divide them.

"I think it will have a distinctively negative effect on the US-talks," said Philip Levy, senior fellow at and an in George W Bush's

"There's the humiliating way this happened right before the dinner, with Xi unaware. Very hard to save face on this one. And we may see (Chinese retaliation), which will embitter relations." Canadian said in a court hearing Friday that a warrant had been issued for Meng's arrest in New York August 22.

He said Meng, arrested en route to from Hong Kong, was aware of the investigation and had been avoiding the for months, even though her teenage son goes to school in

Gibb-Carsley alleged that Huawei had done business in through a Hong Kong company called

Meng, he said, had misled US banks into thinking that Huawei and were separate when, in fact, "was Huawei."

Meng has contended that Huawei sold Skycom in 2009.

In urging the court to reject Meng's request, Gibb-Carsley said the Huawei had vast resources and a strong incentive to bolt: She's facing fraud charges in the that could put her in prison for 30 years.

Meng's lawyer, David Martin, argued that it would be unfair to deny her just because she "has worked hard and has extraordinary resources."

He told the court that her personal integrity and respect for her father, Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei, would prevent her violating a court order.

Meng, who owns two homes in Vancouver, was willing to wear an ankle bracelet and put the houses up as collateral, he said.

There was no bail decision by the on Friday so Meng will spend the weekend in jail and the hearing will resume Monday.

Justice said he would think about proposed bail conditions over the weekend.

Huawei, in a brief statement emailed to the AP, said that "we have every confidence that the Canadian and US will reach the right conclusion."

The company is the world's biggest supplier of gear used by phone and companies and long has been seen as a front for spying by the or

"What's getting lost in the initial frenzy here is that Huawei has been in the crosshairs of US regulators for some time," said Gregory Jaeger, at the Stroock firm and a former Justice Department

"This is the culmination of what is likely to be a fairly lengthy investigation."

Meng's arrest came as a jarring surprise after the Trump-Xi trade cease-fire in

Exact details of the agreement are elusive. But the said Trump suspended for 90 days an import tax hike on USD 200 billion in Chinese goods that was set to take effect January 1; in return, the said, the Chinese agreed to buy a "very substantial amount of agricultural, energy, industrial" and other products from the

The delay was meant to buy time for the two countries to resolve a trade conflict that has been raging for months.

The US charges that China is using predatory tactics in its drive to overtake America's dominance in technology and global economic leadership.

These allegedly include forcing American and other foreign companies to hand over trade secrets in exchange for access to the Chinese market and engaging in cyber theft.

also regards Beijing's ambitious long-term development plan, "Made in China 2025," as a scheme to dominate such fields as robotics and electric vehicles by unfairly subsidising Chinese companies and discriminating against foreign competitors.

The United States has imposed tariffs on USD 250 billion in Chinese goods to pressure to change its ways. Trump has threatened to expand the tariffs to include just about everything China ships to the United States. has lashed back with tariffs on about USD 110 billion in American exports.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sat, December 08 2018. 11:55 IST