Meng Wanzhou seeks publication ban on new HSBC evidence

The Meng Wanzhou extradition hearings will make a premature resumption on Monday, when the Huawei Technologies CFO will ask the court for a publication ban on new evidence she plans to introduce.

The documents are from Hong Kong court regarding HSBC’s dealings with Huawei - and Meng’s lawyers said the new document should be admitted to show the Chinese executive did not defraud the British bank (as U.S. authorities have alleged in seeking Meng’s extradition).

Meng’s defence, who will argue the merits of introducing the new evidence later this month and was successful in delaying the final committal portion of the hearings to August because of the new evidence, said Hong Kong court stipulations require the new information to have a publication ban. 

The reason, the defence said, is because the documents contain information on how HSBC does business - and a ban would protect the bank’s interests while also encouraging them to participate/cooperate in future criminal investigations.

The Crown has in turn argued against such a ban, saying that redacting the portions of the document where the sensitive information is should suffice. Crown counsel accused Meng’s defence in overreaching in its application for a complete ban on publication.

The court will return for one day (Monday) to argue the ban, then return for two days on July 29 and 30 to argue the merits of including the documents in final arguments. The final portion of the hearing then returns for three weeks on Aug. 3.

Meng has been held in Vancouver since 2018 on a U.S. extradition request, an incident that has derailed Canada-China relations and increased tensions between Beijing and the West (especially the Five Eyes nations of the United States, Canada, Great Britain, Australia and New Zealand).