HSBC and Huawei CFO Reach Document Deal in Extradition Case | Business and economic news


Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou has requested documents from HSBC in its fight against extradition from Canada to the United States.

HSBC and Huawei Technologies chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou has come to an agreement in a dispute over the publication of documents relating to allegations of U.S. fraud against her, their attorneys have told a Hong Kong court.

Judge Linda Chan has issued court orders supporting the deal, she said on Monday. Orders were not immediately available, however.

The legal dispute reached the Hong Kong court last month after a British judge in February blocked the release of internal HSBC documents relating to the fraud allegations against Meng.

Meng, who has been under house arrest in Canada since being detained at Vancouver Airport in 2018, faces bank fraud charges in the United States for allegedly deceiving HSBC about Huawei’s transactions in Iran, forcing the bank to violate US sanctions.

The documents requested from Hong Kong include those related to the assessment of the risk of compliance, sanctions, credit or reputation posed by Huawei Technologies, Skycom or Canicula Holdings between the end of 2012 and April 2015, according to a previous court case. Meng’s lawyers have previously argued that HSBC knew Huawei controlled the accounts of Canicula Holdings Ltd, the parent company of Skycom, the entity accused of doing business in Iran.

The tearoom meeting

A key element of the US case concerns a meeting between Meng and an HSBC Holding Plc banker that took place in a Hong Kong teahouse in August 2013. According to the US indictment, a presentation she has distorted Huawei’s operations in Iran, causing the bank to expose itself to sanctions violations. Meng denies the allegations.

Meng Wanzhou, Chief Financial Officer of Huawei [File: Jennifer Gauthier/Reuters]

Meng is seeking records from the bank and said documents would show lenders were aware of ties to Iran-linked Skycom Tech Co.

Meng’s defense team had argued earlier in a Canadian court that because Meng is a Chinese national and the meeting took place in Hong Kong, a Chinese territory, the case was outside of US law. The United States claims jurisdiction in part because the transactions HSBC processed for Huawei were cleared through the US dollar system. Prosecutors in the United States have frequently laid charges against foreign nationals for their use of “dollar compensation”.

The scope of Monday’s deal was unclear.

In response to Reuters’ request for comment on Monday, a Huawei spokesperson and an HSBC spokeswoman said they had reached an agreement, but did not provide further details.





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