Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of Huawei, leaves her home in Vancouver to attend a court hearing, Monday, March 1, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of Huawei, leaves her home in Vancouver to attend a court hearing, Monday, March 1, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

Trump comments on trade negotiations with China take centre stage in Meng case

Meng was arrested at Vancouver’s airport more than two years ago

VANCOUVER — Public comments by former U.S. president Donald Trump will take centre stage at the British Columbia Supreme Court today in the case of a Huawei executive facing extradition to the United States.

The defence team for Meng Wanzhou is arguing that Trump’s comments to media in the wake of her arrest demonstrate that he was using her as a bargaining chip in trade negotiations with China.

However, lawyers for Canada’s attorney general have said in documents that they will argue the claim is irrelevant now that Trump is out of office.

Meng was arrested at Vancouver’s airport more than two years ago on a provisional arrest warrant to face fraud charges in the United States that both she and Huawei deny.

The extradition case is entering its final seven weeks of legal arguments, culminating in the actual extradition or committal hearing in May.

The argument surrounding Trump is the first of four in which Meng’s team will say that she was subjected to an abuse of process and proceedings should be stayed.

The court will also consider arguments that Meng’s arrest at Vancouver’s airport was unlawful, that the United States misled Canadian officials in its summary of the allegations against her and that the case doesn’t qualify under international law because Meng’s alleged conduct had no meaningful connection to the United States.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 3, 2021.

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