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Meng Wanzhou pleads not guilty, reaching agreement with US prosecutors

  Source:www.chinadiplomacy.org.cn   Updated:2021-09-27 12:27   Hits:

NEW YORK, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) -- Meng Wanzhou, a Chinese business executive with Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd., pleaded not guilty to all charges against her and reached a deferred prosecution agreement with U.S. prosecutors on Friday afternoon in a virtual hearing in New York.

U.S. prosecutors agreed to defer Meng's prosecution until Dec. 1, 2022, and the U.S. Department of Justice is obliged to "promptly notify Canada's minister of justice that it is withdrawing its request for Meng's extradition," according to the deferred prosecution agreement.

Meng was arbitrarily detained for more than 1,000 days in Canada.

The U.S. Department of Justice will dismiss the indictment against Meng as well as the underlying charging instruments against her as long as Meng remains in full compliance with her obligations under the agreement for the deferred period, said the agreement.

Meng also agreed to a statement of facts as part of the agreement.

"Under the terms of this agreement, Ms. Meng will not be prosecuted further in the United States and the extradition proceedings in Canada will be terminated," said William W. Taylor, III, counsel to Meng and partner with law firm Zuckerman Spaeder in a statement on Friday.

"She has not pleaded guilty and we fully expect the indictment will be dismissed with prejudice after fourteen months," the lawyer stressed.

"This Deferred Prosecution Agreement will lead to the end of the ongoing extradition proceedings in Canada, which otherwise could have continued for many months, if not years," stated Acting Assistant Attorney General Mark J. Lesko for the U.S. Justice Department's National Security Division.

Hours after the announcement of the agreement, Meng boarded a flight to the city of Shenzhen, returning to China for the first time since her arrest at Vancouver's international airport at the behest of U.S. authorities on Dec. 1, 2018.