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B.C. judge orders RCMP to give Meng data on devices seized during arrest

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  • VANCOUVER — A judge has ordered the RCMP to provide copies of the content on seven electronic devices to an executive of Chinese tech giant Huawei Technologies after they were seized at Vancouver’s airport during her arrest.

    Justice Heather Holmes of the British Columbia Supreme Court said in an order issued after a brief hearing Friday that the RCMP must make copies for Meng Wanzhou of data on an iPhone, an iPad, a Macbook Air, a Huawei phone, two SIM cards and a flash drive.

    Holmes said a representative of the Mounties must forward the electronics to an examiner of the force’s technical crime unit within three days so content can be extracted onto devices provided by Meng.

    She ordered the devices be unsealed under the supervision of one of Meng’s defence lawyers, who Holmes called a “referee” in her written order, adding the lawyer would supervise the examiner’s work and be provided with a copy of the information as well as a list of files for his client.

    The examiner must then reseal the seized devices and seal two copies of the data transferred for the RCMP on devices it has provided, one as a backup, Holmes said.

    She ordered the RCMP to keep the copies and a list of files in a secure exhibit locker until they are provided to the court, along with the seized electronics.

    “The seized devices and the RCMP copy and the RCMP backup shall not otherwise be unsealed or accessed without a further order of this court,” Holmes said in her written order.

    The items were confiscated on Dec. 1 when Meng was taken into custody at the request of the United States, which is seeking her extradition on fraud charges.

    Canada announced earlier this month that a hearing against Huawei’s chief financial officer can move forward but Justice Minister David Lametti would ultimately decide whether Meng would be extradited to face charges of bank fraud, wire fraud and two counts of conspiracy to commit both.

    She has denied any wrongdoing.

    Meng has been free on bail since Dec. 11 and is living in one of her two multimillion-dollar homes in Vancouver while wearing an electronic tracking device and being monitored by a security company.

    She and her husband provided $7.5 million in cash for the $10-million bail and the rest was covered by four sureties, including three people who put up their homes as a deposit and a fourth who brought a $50,000 certified cheque to the court.

    A lawyer for Meng and the Justice Department did not comment outside court on Friday.

    Meng was not in court but her previous appearances have drawn a number of spectators and extra sheriffs have been needed.

    Holmes asked the defence and the Crown to come up with suggestions on how to balance the public’s interest in the case and the demands it has put on court staff trying to do their regular duties.

    “Her attendance seems to attract an enormous amount of attention both beforehand and the day of her attendance,” she said.

    “It does place considerable stress on the court’s resources although people are entitled to be here,” she said. “I imagine it may have been stressful for Ms. Meng herself.”

    Last week in New York, lawyers for Huawei entered not guilty pleas on allegations the company violated Iran trade sanctions.

    Prosecutors in the United States have accused Huawai of using a Hong Kong front company to trade with Iran in violation of U.S. sanctions, alleging Meng, the daughter of the company’s founder, lied to banks about those dealings.

    Huawei is also accused in a separate indictment of stealing technology secrets. Meng and the company have also denied any wrongdoing relating to those allegations.

    — Follow @CamilleBains1 on Twitter.

     

     

    Camille Bains, The Canadian Press


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    National

    Global Affairs warns Canadians in Sri Lanka there could be more attacks

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  • OTTAWA — The federal government is warning Canadians in Sri Lanka to limit their movements and avoid affected areas after a series of bomb blasts killed at least 207 people and injured hundreds more.

    Global Affairs Canada has issued a statement warning that the situation in the island nation remains “volatile,” and more attacks are possible. The government has also warned that the High Commission of Canada to Sri Lanka in the capital Colombo will be closed on Monday due to the security situation.

    Sri Lanka’s government has imposed a nationwide overnight curfew and blocked access to social media in the wake of the attacks at churches, hotels and a guesthouse on Easter Sunday.

    The country’s foreign minister says at least 27 foreigners were among those killed in the co-ordinated attacks, but it’s not clear if any Canadians are among the victims.

    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is among the world leaders responding to the tragedy, tweeting Sunday morning that Canada “strongly condemns the heinous attacks on Christians.”

    “Absolutely horrific news from Sri Lanka,” Trudeau wrote. “Our hearts and thoughts are with the families and loved ones of those killed and all those injured.”

    The Sri Lankan defence minister said seven suspects linked to the blasts have been arrested.

    — with files from The Associated Press

    The Canadian Press


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    Hundreds of Canadian troops deployed to flood zones in Quebec and N.B.

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  • MONTREAL — Many people in Quebec and New Brunswick will be spending their Sunday filling sandbags as they keep an anxious watch on rising floodwaters that are wreaking havoc across a wide region.

    About 200 soldiers started filling sandbags and carrying out evacuations in Quebec’s Outaouais and Mauricie regions overnight, with an additional 400 troops standing ready to deploy there and in Laval today.

    Urgence Quebec says that as of last night, bloated rivers had resulted in 903 flooded residences, 251 isolated residences and 317 evacuees across the province.

    Eight major floods have been identified as threatening thousands of Quebecers, and so far one death has been blamed on the high water.

    Police say 72-year-old Louise Seguin Lortie died Saturday morning after driving her car into a sinkhole caused by flooding in the Pontiac area, about 30 kilometres northwest of Ottawa.

    Some of the worst flooding has been in the Beauce region south of Quebec City, where 868 homes were swamped and 94 people evacuated.

    Meanwhile, about 120 Canadian soldiers are being deployed across western New Brunswick to help residents threatened by rising floodwaters.

    Fifteen communities in that province have been warned to remain on high alert.

     

    The Canadian Press


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