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Huawei CFO Out on Bail, Deal in the Works?

By William Vogeler, Esq. | Last updated on

Caught in the cross hairs of US-China relations, Huawei's chief financial officer bailed out of jail this week.

Meng Wanzhou had been in custody for 10 days after her arrest on fraud charges. She faces up to 30 years in prison if convicted.

Bail cost $7.5 million, which is not much for China's telecommunications giant. The stakes in the international market are much higher.

High Stakes

Chinese stocks took a dive after Wanzhou was arrested in Vancouver at the request of U.S. authorities. The backdrop shuddered across the globe as American stocks also tanked.

The Justice Department alleges Wanzhou misled multinational banks about Iran-linked transactions. Allegedly, that allowed an unofficial Huawei subsidiary to do business with Iran despite U.S. sanctions.

In an interview with Reuters, President Trump said he could intervene in the case. He said it could be instrumental to closing a trade deal with China.

"If I think it's good for what will be certainly the largest trade deal ever made -- which is a very important thing -- what's good for national security - I would certainly intervene if I thought it was necessary," Trump said.

Bail Conditions

Meanwhile, Wanzhou will be free on bail with conditions. She must surrender her passport, wear an ankle bracelet, and not leave her residence between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m.

She is the daughter of multibillionaire Ren Zhengfei, Huawei's founder. His company reported $92 billion in revenue in 2017.

Tech industry observers see Wanzhou's arrest as part of "an escalating technology rivalry between China and the US."

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