The Ministry of Justice has reached an agreement with Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou that will allow her to return home to China, awaiting the judge’s approval. Meng was arrested in Canada in 2018 on behalf of the United States for allegedly violating US sanctions on Iran. She fought attempts to extradite her to the United States.
Meng, who is under house arrest while on bail, will admit some irregularities, and in return prosecutors will postpone and eventually dismiss charges of banking and electronic fraud, according to Wall Street Journal i The New York Times. Meng appeared remotely in federal court on Friday afternoon, and the Justice Department said in a submission that it would file a “solution” to the charges against her.
Prosecutors claimed that in 2013, Meng misled the bank about Huawei’s ties to Iran. She dismissed the charges, threatening her with up to 30 years in prison.
Meng’s detention sparked an international incident. Two Canadians were arrested in China a few days after Meng’s arrest. The WSJ reports that an agreement with Meng could encourage China to release Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig.
Officials from the Trump administration reportedly offered Meng a similar contract last year, but she reportedly refused to acknowledge any act. Biden administration officials have reopened talks in recent weeks, according to reports, and since Meng was apparently seeking a reunion with her family, she may have been more open to compromise. A judge in Vancouver was expected to rule on a possible extradition of Meng to the U.S. later this year, after nearly two years of hearings.
Huawei and its subsidiaries continue to face charges in the U.S., including conspiracy to steal trade secrets and conspiracy to racketeer. The company is not said to be part of Meng’s deal and will reportedly continue to fight the charges.
The US and Huawei have been in conflict for several years. U.S. officials lobbied allies to avoid using the company’s 5G telecommunications equipment due to national security concerns, although Huawei insisted its equipment was safe. U.S. sanctions on the company prompted Google to block Huawei’s Android upgrades, prompting it to switch to HarmonyOS 2 (which is Android’s jaw) on phones and tablets.
Updated September 24 1:22 PM ET: It was noted that the Ministry of Justice agreed to resolve the charges in a court submission.
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