A US judge on Friday dismissed an indictment against Meng Wanzhou, Huawei Technologies Co.’s chief financial officer, ending a criminal sanctions saga that has strained US-China relations.
Wanzhou’s arrest in Canada in December 2018 sparked a global confrontation between China and the US
The telecom executive was released after US prosecutors agreed that Wanzhou had adhered to the terms of her deferred prosecution agreement.
“It is hereby ordered that the third superseding indictment in the matter set forth above concerning the defendant Wanzhou Meng is hereby dismissed with prejudice,” District Judge Ann Donnelly said in a written decision.
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Prosecutors charged Wanzhou with bank fraud and other crimes for misleading HSBC Holdings Plc and other banks about Huawei’s relationship with a company operating in Iran.
They said Wanzhou’s actions put banks at risk of penalties for processing transactions that violated US sanctions.
Huawei has pleaded not guilty to related criminal charges in the United States.
A lawyer for Wanzhou and her spokesman did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s requests for comment.
Wanzhou spent almost three years under house arrest in Canada after she was arrested at an airport in Vancouver.
She entered into a deferred prosecution agreement with US prosecutors in September 2021 in which she admitted making false statements about Huawei’s business in Iran – Skycom Tech Co Ltd.
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On the day Donnelly approved that deal, Wanzhou flew home to Shenzhen.
His return was met by a flag-waving group of airline workers and was carried live on state television.
Wanzhou thanked the ruling Communist Party and Xi Jinping for supporting her through more than 1,000 days of house arrest in Vancouver, where she owns two multimillion-dollar mansions.
“I have finally returned to the warm embrace of the motherland,” Wanzhou said. “As an ordinary Chinese citizen going through this difficult time, I always felt the warmth and concern of the party, the nation and the people.”
Shortly afterwards, China released two Canadians it had been holding, and two American siblings who had been prevented from leaving the country were allowed to fly home.
Wanzhou, 50, now serves as Huawei’s rotating chairman and deputy chairman, as well as CFO.
The US still sees Huawei as a national security threat.
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On November 25, the Biden administration banned the approval of new telecommunications equipment from China’s Huawei and ZTE Corp because they posed an “unacceptable risk” to national security.