The U.S. Justice Department has announced that Huawei Telecom, the company's Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou, and two unnamed affiliates have been charged with bank and wire fraud in order to violate trade sanctions against the country of Iran today. In an indictment totaling 13 counts, the DoJ says that Huawei lied to banking institutions and the U.S. government about the China headquarters business relations with subsidiaries Skycom Tech and Huawei Device USA so it could conduct trade with and in Iran.
Meng is currently detained in Vancouver by Canadian authorities while the U.S. attempts extradition. The U.S. has given Canada a deadline of January 30 to hand over Meng, who prosecutors say knowingly violated trade sanctions against Iran through a Hong Kong shell company. Acting U.S. Attorney General Matt Whitaker has said the DoJ will continue with extradition efforts; both he and FBI Director Christopher Wray also express their thanks to Canadian officials for their assistance in the matter. Meng denies all charges.
Official charges were also announced today against Huawei for stealing trade secrets from T-Mobile US. The indictment lists wire fraud, obstruction of justice and theft of trade secrets stemming from three Huawei employees allegedly taking photos of T-Mobile's testing robot "Tappy" during a visit to the company's Bellvue, Washington automated test lab. Huawei has been to court over these allegations twice before: in a civil suit filed in 2014 and another trial in 2017 where T-Mobile was awarded $4.8 million.
Huawei also denies these allegations and says nothing was stolen, as there are numerous videos of Tappy on the internet.
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