Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of Huawei, wears a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 as she arrives at B.C. Supreme Court to attend a hearing in Vancouver, on September 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of Huawei, wears a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 as she arrives at B.C. Supreme Court to attend a hearing in Vancouver, on September 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

RCMP officer says nothing unusual in U.S. request to arrest Huawei’s CFO

Meng is wanted on fraud charges in the United States that both she and Huawei have denied

An RCMP officer involved in the arrest of a Huawei executive at Vancouver’s airport says a flow of some information between Canadian and foreign agencies is typical in extradition requests but he had no direct contact with U.S. officials the night before her arrest.

Const. Winston Yep is the first witness to give testimony in an evidentiary hearing for Meng Wanzhou, whose legal team hopes to gather evidence this week to support its claims her arrest was unlawful.

Meng is wanted on fraud charges in the United States that both she and Huawei have denied.

Yep is the officer who told Meng of her arrest through a Mandarin interpreter, three hours after she was detained at Vancouver’s airport in 2018.

Yep told the B.C. Supreme Court hearing that he was in the RCMP’s foreign and domestic liaison unit when he received a request Nov. 30 from the United States via Canada’s Department of Justice to arrest Meng.

He says beyond the request for Meng’s extradition, United States officials also asked that her electronics be placed in a specialized bag that prevents content from being erased remotely.

He says nothing about the request struck him as unusual.

“It was part of the arrest process,” Yep said.

Yep says Canadian and foreign agencies communicate with each other, but there are limits on some personal information protected by privacy laws.

He says the RCMP and Canada Border Services Agency are partners and also share information.

Yep says Meng was the third person he had ever arrested because of an extradition request. He was in the midst of conducting his second such arrest on Nov. 30, 2018, just one day before Meng was arrested, when he received the request about her.

When he read the record of case, he says he realized it was a high-profile arrest because he knew Huawei was one of the largest telecommunications companies in the world, although he had not heard of Meng before.

Yep says he travelled with a colleague to Vancouver’s airport to confirm Meng was on her flight, but they had not formulated a plan beyond that.

The witnesses called to testify in court this week have been requested by Meng’s defence, but a lawyer for the Attorney General of Canada was the first to question him.

About 10 witnesses are expected to testify over the course of this week.

The defence team is gathering evidence that it hopes to use in arguments next year in a hearing over whether Meng was subject to an abuse of process.

In addition to arguing her arrest and detention were unlawful, Meng’s lawyers allege comments from U.S. President Donald Trump show she is being used as a bargaining chip in the relationship between China and the U.S.

Associate Chief Justice Heather Holmes, who is hearing the case, is also considering whether to allow another abuse of process argument to proceed alleging that the United States misled Canadian officials in the summary of allegations it provided to them.

Meng’s arrest has strained relations between Canada and China.

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Huawei

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

Just Posted

The Quesnel RCMP Detachment is one of seven northern police buildings which can now connect directly to Prince George for daily bail hearings. (Observer File Photo)
Bail hearings going virtual in B.C.’s north

A court pilot project will see virtual courtroom cameras set up in seven RCMP detatchments

FILE – Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs have agreed to sign a memorandum on rights and title with B.C. and Ottawa, but elected chiefs are demanding it be called off over lack of consultation. (Thom Barker photo)
Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs, Lake Babine Nation get provincial funding for land, title rights

Government says it’s a new, flexible model for future agreements between Canada, B.C. and First Nations.

The property on which a residential school (pictured) that was torn down years ago in Lower Post is to be the location of a cultural centre. (Indian Residential School History and Dialogue Centre photo)
Lower Post residential school building to be demolished, replaced with cultural centre

Project to be funded by federal and provincial governments, Daylu Dena Council

Photo collage of loved ones lost to substance use and overdose. (Photo courtesy Moms Stop The Harm)
B.C. overdose deaths still rising 5 years after public health emergency declared

Moms Stop the Harm calls on B.C. to provide safe supply in response to deadly illicit drug use

Angelique Houlihan gets her COVID-19 vaccine jab last week at the community-wide clinic. (Angelique Houlihan photo)
Vaccine clinic continues this week

Plenty of booking spots available

Vancouver resident Beryl Pye was witness to a “concerning,” spontaneous dance party that spread throughout social groups at Kitsilano Beach on April 16. (Screen grab/Beryl Pye)
VIDEO: Dance party erupts at Vancouver’s Kitsilano Beach to the dismay of onlookers

‘It was a complete disregard for current COVID-19 public health orders,’ says Vancouver resident Beryl Pye

Lord Tweedsmuir’s Tremmel States-Jones jumps a player and the goal line to score a touchdown against the Kelowna Owls in 2019. The face of high school football, along with a majority of other high school sports, could significantly change if a new governance proposal is passed at the B.C. School Sports AGM May 1. (Malin Jordan)
Power struggle: New governance model proposed for B.C. high school sports

Most commissions are against the new model, but B.C. School Sports (BCSS) and its board is in favour

Pall Bearers carrying the coffin of the Duke of Edinburgh, followed by the Prince of Wales, left and Princess Anne, right, into St George’s Chapel for his funeral, at Windsor Castle, in Windsor, England, Saturday April 17, 2021. (Danny Lawson/Pool via AP)
Trudeau announces $200K donation to Duke of Edinburgh award as Prince Philip laid to rest

A tribute to the late prince’s ‘remarkable life and his selfless service,’ the Prime Minister said Saturday

B.C. homeowners are being urged to take steps to prepare for the possibility of a flood by moving equipment and other assets to higher ground. (J.R. Rardon)
‘Entire province faces risk’: B.C. citizens urged to prepare for above-average spring flooding

Larger-than-normal melting snowpack poses a threat to the province as warmer weather touches down

Vancouver-based Doubleview Gold Corp. is developing claims in an area north of Telegraph Creek that occupies an important place in Tahltan oral histories, said Chad Norman Day, president of the Tahltan Central Government. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO)
B.C. Indigenous nation opposes mineral exploration in culturally sensitive area

There’s “no way” the Tahltan would ever support a mine there, says Chad Norman Day, president of its central government

Stz’uminus Elder George Harris, Ladysmith Mayor Aaron Stone, and Stz’uminus Chief Roxanne Harris opened the ceremony. (Cole Schisler photo)
Symbolic red dresses rehung along B.C. highway after vandals tore them down

Leaders from Stz’uminus First Nation and the Town of Ladysmith hung new dresses on Sat. April 17

A Western toadlet crosses the centre line of Elk View Road in Chilliwack on Aug. 26, 2010. A tunnel underneath the road has since been installed to help them migrate cross the road. Saturday, April 24 is Save the Frogs Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Progress File)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of April 18 to 24

Save the Frogs Day, Love Your Thighs Day and Scream Day are all coming up this week

Local carpenter Tyler Bohn embarked on a quest to create the East Sooke Treehouse, after seeing people build similar structures on a Discovery Channel show. (East Sooke Treehouse Facebook photo)
PHOTOS: B.C. carpenter builds fort inspired by TV’s ‘Treehouse Masters’

The whimsical structure features a wooden walking path, a loft, kitchen – and is now listed on Airbnb

The Attorney General’s Ministry says certain disputes may now be resolved through either a tribunal or the court system, pending its appeal of a B.C. Supreme Court decision that reduced the tribunal’s jurisdiction. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Court of Appeal grants partial stay in ruling on B.C. auto injuries

B.C. trial lawyers challenged legislation brought in to cap minor injury awards and move smaller court disputes to the Civil Resolution Tribunal

Most Read