Chief financial officer of Huawei, Meng Wanzhou, leaves her home in Vancouver, Wednesday, January 13, 2021. Meng, who is free on bail while fighting extradition to the U.S., is seeking to have the terms of her release conditions changed.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

Chief financial officer of Huawei, Meng Wanzhou, leaves her home in Vancouver, Wednesday, January 13, 2021. Meng, who is free on bail while fighting extradition to the U.S., is seeking to have the terms of her release conditions changed.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

B.C. judge reserves decision on Meng Wanzhou bail conditions

Ruling is scheduled to come on Jan. 29

A British Columbia Supreme Court judge reserved his decision Wednesday on whether bail restrictions will be loosened for Chinese tech executive Meng Wanzhou as she fights extradition to the United States.

Justice William Ehrcke, who first granted Meng bail after her arrest at Vancouver’s airport in December 2018, is set to deliver his ruling on Jan. 29.

Meng’s lawyers have asked the court to approve changes to her bail agreement that would allow her to leave her Vancouver home outside the hours of her overnight curfew without the presence of private security staff.

Her husband Liu Xiaozong is visiting Vancouver and testified Tuesday that Meng has underlying health conditions. He said he believes her proximity to security staff puts her at greater risk of contracting COVID-19.

Doug Maynard, the president of Lions Gate Risk Management, told the court his staff use the strictest health protocols while working with Meng.

The chief financial officer for Huawei is wanted in the United States on fraud charges based on allegations that both she and the company deny.

Maynard testified Wednesday that he believes the risks assessed when Meng was first granted bail persist, including the potential for harm to Meng, her “extraction” from Canada and that she might try to flee.

Maynard also told the court the ankle bracelet Meng wears to track her whereabouts can be “defeated” and it has failed on numerous occasions.

Both technology and security staff are required to monitor Meng, he said.

“Without the human element there you’re down to a single layer, which is just the bracelet, and that can either be removed quite quickly or interfered with.”

Maynard agreed under cross-examination that security staff have not had to intervene to physically protect Meng while she’s been living on bail.

William Smart, a lawyer for Meng, suggested that Lions Gate would lose about $170,000 a month if they’re no longer required to accompany Meng outside.

“I’m not impugning your integrity, but Lions Gate has a financial interest in maintaining the present bail conditions, don’t they?”

“It would be a loss of revenue,” said Maynard, agreeing with the approximate amount while noting it would represent revenue before the costs of doing business and the monthly loss would not be as high as $170,000.

John Gibb-Carsley, a lawyer for Canada’s Attorney General, argued Meng remains a flight risk with substantial resources at her disposal.

But another lawyer for Meng, Mona Duckett, quoted an affidavit from her client that said she would never do anything that would damage Huawei’s reputation.

“I believe that breaching my bail conditions would cause such damage,” Meng said in the document.

Duckett told the court Meng has shown over the duration of her bail agreement that the judge’s trust in her was well placed.

She said it’s not a realistic risk “to suggest that (Meng) would intentionally make herself a fugitive by fleeing instead of continuing to vigorously fight this extradition.”

Ehrcke noted Meng’s original bail agreement included a requirement that Lions Gate CEO Scot Filer deposit a surety of $1,000.

After checking with Filer’s corporate counsel on Wednesday, Duckett told the court she learned Filer was not prepared to continue acting as surety in the event the court grants their request to change Meng’s bail conditions.

U.S. officials allege Meng misrepresented Huawei’s business dealings in Iran to HSBC, putting the bank at risk of violating American sanctions.

Meng’s lawyers are fighting her extradition with several arguments claiming she was subjected to an abuse of process and she should be freed.

They allege Meng’s arrest was unlawful, that U.S. authorities misled Canadian officials in their summary of the case, that Meng was used as a political pawn by U.S. President Donald Trump and that the United States is trying to assert jurisdiction where it doesn’t exist under international law.

This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship.

The Canadian Press

Huawei

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Cowichan Tribes’ gymnasium at 5574 River Road is now operating as an extreme weather shelter. (Submitted photo)
New extreme weather shelter opens on River Road in Duncan

New facility should relieve some pressure on Warmland House

Dementia doesn’t just affect the person living with a diagnosis; it affects caregivers, family, friends and their community. (Submitted)
January is Alzheimer’s Awareness Month

“Raise your voice: Dementia, long-term care and COVID-19” on Jan. 27

The firefighters at the Mesachie Lake fire hall could soon be working out of a new retrofitted building if the Cowichan V alley Regional District is successful with its application for a $350,000 federal grant to fund the project. (File photo)
Major retrofit planned for Mesachie Lake fire hall

CVRD applies for $350,000 federal grant

Dog owners, from left, Marlyn Briggs with Nayla, Marjory Sutherland with Effie and Mick, and Christina Godbolt with Conon walk their pets frequently at the Chemainus Ball Park but are growing increasingly concerned about drugs being found discarded in the area. (Photo by Don Bodger)
Puppy requires emergency treatment 3 times after ingesting drugs from Chemainus parks

Dog owners walking in Chemainus parks urged to take caution

The Cowichan Valley School District is holding an online session to discuss the future of Koksilah Elementary School, closed since 2013. (File photo)
What’s the future of the old Koksilah Elementary School?

The district is hoping to collect feedback on options for the future of the school.

Toronto Public Health nurse Lalaine Agarin sets up for mass vaccination clinic in Toronto, Jan. 17, 2021. B.C. is set to to begin its large-scale immunization program for the general public starting in April. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
B.C.’s COVID-19 mass vaccinations expected to start in April

Clinics to immunize four million people by September

Terry Keogh, an RDN Transit driver, used his paramedic skills the morning of Jan. 22 after coming across an unconscious woman along his route in downtown Nanaimo. (RDN Transit photo)
Nanaimo transit driver stops his bus and helps get overdosing woman breathing again

Former EMT from Ireland performed CPR on a woman in downtown Nanaimo on Friday

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam speaks during a daily briefing in Ottawa. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld)
31 cases of COVID-19 variants detected in Canada: Health officials

Dr. Theresa Tam made announces 13 more variant COVID-19 cases in Canada

Daily COVID-19 cases reported to each B.C. health region, to Jan. 20, 2021. Island Health in blue, Northern Health green, Interior Health orange, Vancouver Coastal in red and Fraser Health in purple. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate stays stable with 508 cases Friday

Vaccine delivered to more than 110,000 high-risk people

Black Press file photo
Investigation at remote burned-out Vancouver Island cabin reveals human remains

Identity of victim not released, believed to be the owner of an SUV vehicle found parked nearby

Angela Waldick is the new team photographer for the Nanaimo NightOwls. (Nanaimo NightOwls photo)
Half-blind photographer will help new Island baseball team look picture-perfect

Nanaimo NightOwls say legally blind team photographer is making history

The District of Saanich’s communications team decided to take part in a viral trend on Thursday and photoshopped U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders into a staff meeting photo. (District of Saanich/Twitter)
Bernie Sanders makes guest appearance municipal staff meeting in B.C.

Vancouver Island firefighters jump on viral trend of photoshopped U.S. senator

School District 57 headquarters in Prince George. (Mark Nielsen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter)
Prince George school district settles with sexual abuse victim

Terms were part of an out-of-court settlement reached with Michael Bruneau, nearly four years after he filed a lawsuit

Surrey provincial court. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
New COVID-19 protocols set for provincial courthouses

The new rules were issued on Jan. 21, and took effect immediately

Most Read