Massages and Private Shopping Trips Cushion Tycoon’s Detention


The Huawei govt, Meng Wanzhou, wished by america on fraud expenses, has already been main a comfortable life in her gated, seven-bedroom mansion in Vancouver, out on $8 million in bail and awaiting the end result of her extradition listening to.

However now it seems that her life as one of many world’s most well-known detainees is extra comfy than beforehand recognized, and that she needs much more freedoms, based on new particulars that emerged throughout a two-day bail listening to this week.

Ms. Meng receives common non-public portray classes and massages on the mansion. She has gone on non-public buying sprees at shops reserved for her and her entourage, albeit with a GPS tracker on her left ankle. She spent Christmas Day at a restaurant that opened only for her, her husband, her two kids and 10 different visitors.

This week, her authorized staff made one other request: that she be allowed to depart her residence with out safety guards. A choose is predicted to rule on the finish of the month.

Ms. Meng, 48, daughter of Huawei’s founder, Ren Zhengfei, has been held in Canada for greater than two years on an extradition request from america.

Her detention has severely strained Canada’s relations with China. On the similar time, her luxurious dwelling situations have raised hackles in Canada, the place critics have contrasted them with the dire, truncated lives of two Canadians jailed by China in obvious retaliation.

This week’s listening to underlined how the pandemic has affected Ms. Meng’s life and spilled over into her authorized case. Her protection staff argued that her rotating safety element doubtlessly exposes her to the coronavirus. However the prosecution countered that she and her household had flouted pandemic protocols, by, amongst different issues, sharing plates of meals amongst a big group.

Ms. Meng was arrested at Vancouver Worldwide Airport in December 2018, throughout a layover on a visit from Hong Kong to Mexico. In an indictment against Ms. Meng and Huawei, the U.S. Division of Justice charged her with fraudulently deceiving 4 banks into making transactions to assist the corporate illegally evade U.S. sanctions towards Iran. She has denied the costs.

The Trump administration has argued that the corporate needs to be seen as an agent of the Chinese language authorities.

Ms. Meng at the moment lives in a mansion valued at about $14 million Canadian {dollars}, about $11 million U.S. {dollars}, in Vancouver’s unique Shaughnessy neighborhood. She is allowed to maneuver comparatively freely in Vancouver; earlier than the pandemic, she attended a live performance by a Chinese language singer.

However the phrases of her bail topic her to 24-hour surveillance by a safety staff, at her personal expense, and he or she have to be at residence throughout a nightly 11 p.m.-to-6 a.m. curfew.

Her confinement, although, has not been devoid of stress. Douglas Maynard, the president of the safety agency monitoring her, instructed the courtroom that there had been a number of threatening letters despatched to her in June and July of 2020, and that the Chinese language consulate had requested the Canadian authorities to return Ms. Meng instantly to China for her security.

In Canada, critics have contrasted her opulent dwelling situations with these of the 2 Canadians, Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig, who had been detained shortly after Ms. Meng’s arrest and accused of espionage. For 2 years, they’ve been remoted and subjected to harsh situations in jail in China, unable to see their households.

David Mulroney, a former Canadian ambassador to China, accused China of holding the 2 Canadians for ransom. “Each step within the authorized course of towards Ms. Meng is mirrored by a faux Chinese language course of,” Mr. Mulroney stated. “Meng is a princess of their system.”

Throughout this week’s listening to, Ms. Meng’s protection staff argued that her safety guards undermined her capacity to go outdoors along with her kids as a result of the guards attracted an excessive amount of media consideration. Ms. Meng’s husband Liu Xiaozong testified that posed a possible well being threat to Ms. Meng since she had undergone surgical procedure for thyroid most cancers a number of years in the past and suffers from hypertension.

However prosectors from Canada’s Division of Justice argued that permitting her to roam freely with out guards posed an excessive amount of of a flight threat. Mr. Maynard stated that her ankle bracelet had failed “on many various instances.”

Mr. Liu and their two kids — a daughter, age 12, and a son, age 18 — got permission to return to Canada within the fall. He and the 2 kids plan to return to Hong Kong on the finish of February, he stated.

Mr. Liu acknowledged in courtroom that he and their two kids had contact with Ms. Meng throughout the two weeks after they arrived in Canada from Hong Kong, regardless of guidelines requiring a 14-day quarantine.

Prosecutors famous that in Could, when a courtroom choice may have resulted in her being freed, a aircraft had been chartered to doubtlessly take her again to China if the choose dominated in her favor. In the long run, the judge ruled against her.

Mr. Liu stated Ms. Meng would obey her bail situations, and wished to be a “good mother and an excellent instance to the children.”

Tracy Sherlock contributed reporting from Vancouver.



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