US files fraud charges against Huawei

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The US justice department has filed charges against Chinese company Huawei.  A 13-count indictment was unsealed in New York charging Huawei, two of its affiliates and a senior executive at the company.

The charges include bank fraud, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and violating the International Emergency Economic Powers Act.

Meng Wanzhou, Huawei’s chief financial officer, was also accused of misleading U.S. banks about Huawei’s Iranian business deals. Wanzhou was arrested in Canada late last year and the Justice Department is seeking to have her extradited.

“For over a decade, Huawei employed a strategy of lies and deceit to conduct and grow its business,” Richard Donoghue, U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York, said at a press conference.

A separate case filed in Washington state charges Huawei with stealing trade secrets from T-Mobile.

Prosecutors say Huawei used a Hong Kong shell company to sell equipment in Iran in violation of US sanctions.

US commerce secretary Wilbur Ross said the Huawei case was “wholly separate” from trade negotiations with China.

Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker stated that Huawei was also accused of “concealing and destroying evidence” and “moving potential government witnesses to China.”

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said the U.S would not tolerate Huawei’s support of an “odious regime”—referring to its violation of Iran sanctions.

FBI Director Christopher Wray called the actions of Huawei’s leadership “pervasive” activity that sought to “criminally undermine” the U.S.

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