Don’t arrest Chinese CFOs and CEOs

That is the topic of my latest Bloomberg column, here is just one short excerpt:

In the longer run, bringing charges against Meng is likely to accelerate the division of the world into two competing systems of law, technology and commerce — namely those of China and the U.S. That will encourage international relations to develop along the dimension of power — what can you get away with? — rather than law or orderly cooperation. The West’s dirty little secret is that the rule of law works well only when tempered with a high degree of discretion.

And:

At the margin, the legal reach and police power of the U.S. can always be invoked to fight another crime or resolve another corruption problem. Don’t like how FIFA — the international soccer federation — is being run? Get the U.S. in on the act. There are in fact laws that gave the U.S. jurisdiction over bad FIFA practices (wire fraud, racketeering, and money laundering), and the Department of Justice led a successful anti-corruption case starting in 2015.

That enforcement action seems to have gone fine, but where to stop? There a lot of wrongdoers who are connected, in one way or another, to the U.S. financial system. But America has more credibility as global policeman when it focuses on only the most pressing cases, such as when innocent victims are being killed.

Best yet, I offer remarks on Brexit as well.

Comments

Excellent piece. (Twitter version: there is an optimal level of law enforcement.)

I dare China to arrest a US executive. Double dare you, Xi Dada. Molon Labe. #maga2020

Excellent Piece?
" But America has more credibility as global policeman when it focuses on only the most pressing cases, such as when innocent victims are being killed."

HAHAHAAHAHHA

And an extra hee-hee-hee from me. It's the way he tells 'em.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RM0uvgHKZe8

It is a mistake to even allow Chinese into the country. They are mostly spies. Get China out of the U.S. and get the U.S. out of China. We should manufacture our own cheap junk.

LMFAO. Spoken like a true, non-self aware neocon.

TC, you and your neocon buddies have promoted this behavior with your great power competition hyping and China fear-mongering via economic espionage (whereas the US does it with benevolent intentions).

This neocon group think has concluded to its logical end of treating CEOs of economically powerful competitor countries as spies ready for a dose of US given freedom/death penalty.

" But America has more credibility as global policeman when it focuses on only the most pressing cases, such as when innocent victims are being killed."

"U.S. has spent $6 trillion on wars that killed 500,000 people since 9/11, a report says..."

USA! USA! USA!

https://www.newsweek.com/us-spent-six-trillion-wars-killed-half-million-1215588?utm_medium=Social&utm_campaign=NewsweekTwitter&utm_source=Twitter

My impression is that Americans are firmly convinced that no one would ever dare arrest a rich White CEO. We'll see how that plays out.

https://www.gatesnotes.com/Development/Reinvent-the-Toilet-Expo-speech

Chinese Employment Law is an insane web of weird, contradictory, and bafflingly complex requirements, almost all of which place the onus to comply on the employer.

https://www.chinalawblog.com/2018/02/terminating-a-china-employee-why-your-rules-and-regulations-are-key.html

If Canada had a clue, they would find a pretext to release her immediately.

Why would they release her? She broke the law selling illegally to Iran. She doesn't deserve special treatment just because she is a rich Chinese woman. The law applies equally to all.

"Illegally" in what country? We do not know what the specifics are, however let's paint a picture:
"She has double citizenship (Chineese and Canadian), that was a mistake on her part, but nonetheless. Her company (probably with her explicit knowledge) is trading with Iran. However, Iran sanctions are not worldwide, as a matter of fact they are considered unlawful in China. She might not have been in Canada, but there, when all those deals were made."

Now, de jure, if she actually has Canadian citizenship, she has done illegal things from Canadian goverment's point of view. However, she did not do anything illegal from Chineese standpoint, she also was in charge of Chineese company that is right now caught in the middle of trade war with USA. I am pretty sure there are other Canadian citizens that make unlawful trades. However, this whole thing is not about law, it's about have a bargaining chip (or a pretense of one) with one of the biggest companies. Does it look good from China standpoint? No, it's an act of diplomatic warfare. Does it look from foreign investors? No, because at any point your deeds in other countries can be used against you as soon, as you step on American soil (and as time has shown, you don't even have to be on the soil, they have long arms of justice).

Being worldwide policeman is very usefull, however, some countries might point out, that they never signed of policing themselves. So, I wonder, if that's a clever move, to even further antagonize other countries.

Chinese and Canadian citizenship.

What if we're just witnessing the purge of a CEO who is not trustable enough to the communist party? Just a few days ago, the guy from Alibaba said the communist party was before the business.

This can be a favor from Trump to China's rulers.

That's her fault for having two citizenships because that means twice as many legal booby traps and twice as much work to keep up to date. I have a hard enough time keeping track of all the new federal and state laws that get passed every year. Also you didn't make a strong case for why this is "diplomatic warfare" instead of the more obvious and straightforward fact that she broke the laws of Canada.

This is factually incorrect. She does not have dual-citizenship. She held Canadian permanent residency for a while but gave it up. She is a Chinese citizen.

China does not permit dual citizenship so that is not a possibility.

Source: CBC

"Dual-citizenship" is not the same as having "two citizenships".

Dual-citizenship exists when two countries recognize a person as being national of both places; this happens generally pursuant to treaties, but they are not very common. One example is Spain and some Latin American countries. If you have the nationality of one of these countries and then become a Spanish national (or vice-versa), both countries will acknowledge the situation.

However, having two (or more) citizenships is a different matter. A country will recognize a person as its citizen independently of otehr countries recognizing citizenship for the same person. If you are born in the U.S., you will be a U.S. citizen, even if other countries also grant you citizenship due to your parents' nationality. You will have two passports (like my children) but both countries will only care about their relationship with you; they will treat you as their national and ignore any claim from the other country to you. For example, if they arrest you, they will not call the Embassy of the other country.

One thing that happens in some countries is that you will lose your citizenship if you nationalize somewhere else, but they need to discover this to revoke your nationality.

Other countries require that you resign to your previous nationality to become a citizen of their nation. However, the resignation of your nationality will depend on your original country of nationality; some countries will not eliminate your nationality even if you resign, or will allow you to recover it at any time. So even if you nationlized somewhere else and resigned your previous nationality, you may still have two citizenships.

Of course, I do not know if she had two citizenships or if she was merely a resident. I also do not know if the laws regarding Iran also apply to Canadian residents or former residents.

I'm aware of this (I had to relinquish my original citizenship to acquire my second one -- the first country didn't allow dual, the second did, but it didn't matter. I automatically lost my first.).

The shorthand is still "dual citizenship".

And Ms Meng did not have that, which is the crux of this discussion.

She was not arrested for selling to Iran. She was arrested for signing fraudulent statements attesting to having no relationship with a company the banks didn’t want to do business with in order to deceive those banks into doing business.

This is run of the mill corporate fraud — and yes Chinese corporate officers should be held to account.

Who wouldn't? Carlos Ghosn was just arrested by Japan, and rich white CEOs end up in trouble all the time in the West (Elizabeth Holmes).

Good. Let's throw some Wall St bankers in jail for the Great Fraud of 2007. Oh wait ....

Good column as far as it goes but I think Trump's administration is playing a deeper, more dangerous, and more permanently damaging game: just as war is politics by other means, arresting business executives is a trade war by other means.

As Tyler says, there were other ways for the US to express its discontent with Huawei's disregard for US sanctions. This way runs the risk of driving a wedge into US-China trade relations. But if you're Trump, Navarro (though I wonder how much influence he had over this decision), etc. that's a feature not a bug.

If in 2020 we're spiraling into the next recession caused by an abrupt decrease in international trade and investment flows, this'll be one of the catalyzing incidents that we'll be pointing to; Trump's version of the Smoot-Hawley Tariff. Brexit won't help.

But no, I don't have a crystal ball. I don't know when the next recession is coming (but recoveries don't last forever, and this one has lasted a lont time).

I don't think there is any evidence that the Trump administration was behind the arrest. In fact, there is much speculation that the president himself was unaware of it.

I predict that Trump will in fact wind up pardoning her. He has bigger fish to fry and having her rot in a US prison doesn't help him one bit.

Yes, this seems to have been the work of the deep state, i.e., Tyler's people.

Yes, let's keep peaceful and profitable trading relations with China until their economy and military are larger than ours. Let's cross that bridge when we come to it, I'm sure it won't be too late and the Chinese will be very nice to us.

Eddie Murphy from "Delerious" "We make you special Won-Ton soup?"

people need to understand lao tzu's art of war which is china's basic strategy...subdue the enemy without firing a shot...Tyler is right...

Nope, Meng belongs in jail. You violate US law, you deserve US punishment. Libertards need to stop aiding and abetting foreign enemies at the cost of US exceptionalism.

+1. USA needs to play to win. Arrest anyone from China who violates the law. Start with the IP thieves. Could easily throw a million of these bastards in prison and every dime would be worth it to taxpayers.

Trump matters. Part of the reason is that I can't really trust that Meng really was arrested for the reasons of violating those sanctions; it's just as likely that someone within the Trump administration felt like "being tough" on China and so picked a random scapegoat. Rule of law works when the laws are actually enforced impartially. I've really got no idea whether that's the case here.

It seems very unlikely "that someone within the Trump administration felt like "being tough" on China and so picked a random scapegoat." Most news reports indicate that Trump was unaware of the plans for her arrest and it is very hard to see how an underling would just pull this out secretly on the very day that Trump was meeting Xi. I don't think Trump likes surprises.

It seems likely to me that Trump was not behind the arrest and it was not random.

http://www.atimes.com/article/did-trumps-enemies-try-to-derail-a-trade-deal-with-china/

I don't know if it was being done by "enemies" seeking to sabotage Trump's trade deal, but it does seem that elects of the US government are marching to the tune of a different piper.

“The West’s dirty little secret is that the rule of law works well only when tempered with a high degree of discretion.”

What? And your answer is more discretion?

How about: create a minimal set of laws and enforce them. Doesn’t that sound more reasonable than an ever expanding corpus of laws of dubious value granting those in power near infinite discretion?

Hmm? How does that sound? Better than your plan?

Or is it that you just love power?

"...an ever expanding corpus of laws of dubious value granting those in power near infinite discretion? "

+1. 'Show me the man and I will show you the crime'. See also: Mueller investigation.

It would be pretty funny if jailed Chinese CEOs shared the same cell as Trump. The best jail cell.

> If I were a top U.S. tech company executive, I would be reluctant to travel to China right now, for fear of retaliation.

We do indeed live in a broken world.

> By arresting Meng, the U.S. is in essence telling China it might do better to break with the international order altogether, rather than subsisting on its fringes.

Sorry Tyler, but China "subsisting on its fringes" of the global world order is not a stable equilibrium. Perhaps its best to make the break explicit now, so there is no ambiguity. The Chinese world order thrives on ambiguity.

If China retaliates by jailing US execs for no good reason, then that will do far more to stop trade with China than Trump's most foolish acts.

The Chinese government has previously shown that they are entirely willing to arbitrarily punish foreign companies, and the multinationals have taken it and asked for more. What makes you think that American CEO's wouldn't swallow their pride and accept a "detention" in a 5-star hotel in order to retain access to that magical golden 1 billion consumer Chinese market?

China also can play rough, see this, which apparently happened earlier. China is an aggressive, hostile power, with nothing to offer the West other than its ambition to rule. The Trump administration has shone a bright light on it.

I have also seen speculation that the arrest of the Huawei CEO was a deep state action to screw up trade negotiations- that may be.

The US is an aggressive, hostile power, with nothing to offer the West other than its ambition to rule.

You have to pick one. Either this arrest is a strong action by Trump to show China who's boss, or it is an attempt by his enemies to sabotage his trade deal. He can't be both the hero and the victim simultaneously.

What's a "good" reason though? I'm surprised Tyler did not mention the detention of Liu Qiangdong in Minneapolis. What makes his case legitimate and Meng's political?

Fair and balanced op-ed by TC. The original "arrest any non-US citizen anywhere in the world and bring them to the USA to face justice" case was the Enrique S. "Kiki" Camarena Salazar (July 26, 1947 – February 9, 1985) abduction of his killers, who were Mexican nationals, abducted on Mexican soil, brought into the USA to face justice, acquitted at the trial court level (LA Fed District Ct), appealed to the US Sup Ct (hard-right Reaganite Rehnquist chief judge), overruled on a split vote, the case became precedent for later abductions and Gitmo detention, and one of the two Kiki killers (the Kiki torture murder being a centerpiece of this season Netflix "Narcos: Mexico" series) was released (after he was overruled on the law) by colorful LA Dist ct judge, sometime circus barker and Palestinian-American Edward Rafeedie for lack of evidence, the defendant being the evil doctor who injected Kiki with drugs so he could be kept alive and awake longer while he was tortured and a hole drilled in his head while still alive, Augusto César Sandino 'gourd cut' style (who also pioneered while as an anti-US rebel the "Colombian necktie", and is revered as a national hero these days in Nicaragua); the other defendant imprisoned and still in US jail.

Bonus trivia: as implied in the Narcos series, the real powers behind the Tijuana drugs cartel were in government and indirectly aided and abetted by US officials, as well as the CIA, ostensibly for their help in fighting communism in Latin America, not unlike in some ways to the WWII help the Italian mafia got from the US government.

Great comment.

"The West’s dirty little secret is that the rule of law works well only when tempered with a high degree of discretion." ---TC

Discretion is also the better part of valor.

PS I suspect you are an Angeleno and not a Greek.

Tyler doesn't get it. Trump is playing 7D chess with Alphazero rating. Tyler only plays 2D chess with Stockfish rating. Trump is negotiating from a position of strength. MAGA!

TC: "The Brexit dilemma is a quite separate example of weaponized interdependence. Opponents of Brexit, myself included, argue that leaving the European Union will take away the U.K.’s seat at the table for setting the rules, without gaining the U.K. much sovereignty in return. Still, isn’t there something deeply wrong with a system where you can’t easily leave a multinational treaty? Under the guise of providing public goods within the EU, the very rules of the EU have imprisoned the countries in the region."

Well, I mean, to say the obvious, that's rather the point! The EU is a stalking horse for European federalism, not a treaty for a true intergovernmental organisation which is fluid in membership and purely instrumental. Its meant to be a proto-state. Lock in is in design, not a bug. The EU is meant to be a kind of imperial entity that uses regulations, tariffs and sanction to bring Europe together as a single power, without using war.

Anybody see this bit of China business analysis from a16z?

https://a16z.com/2018/12/07/when-advertising-isnt-enough-multimodal-business-models-product-strategy/

"iQiyi’s business model has also extended to the real world with its recent launch of ‘on-demand movie theatres.’ These miniature theatres range from two to ten seats, and are rentable by the hour to watch any content from iQiyi’s library. It’s bringing the traditional movie theatre experience up to date in the era of streaming."

China is definitely innovating and the only thing the US can do is imprison the successful. Who's the real communist now?

“Who's the real communist now?”

Um, the one with the Politburo and the deference to Marx and Mao and um the freaking President who just made himself president for life?

'Still, isn’t there something deeply wrong with a system where you can’t easily leave a multinational treaty?'

It appears that the UK will be leaving easily enough - they submitted their 'divorce papers,' and on March 30 2019, they will enjoy all the benefits and privileges of being a non-member of the EU.

As it is right now, it looks as if the UK will be out of the EU, no strings attached at all. Which will create a giant mess, but one can be confident the same Brexiters who complain about how unfairly they are treated will be able to blame the EU.

For example, just read what this person says, and how uncaring they are of British feelings -'“Really, the Norwegian option is not an option. We have been telling you this for one and a half years since the referendum and how this works, so I am surprised that after all these years it is still part of the grown-up debate in the UK. You just expect us to give you an invitation rather than consider whether Norway would want to give you such an invitation. It might be in your interest to use our agreement, but it would not be in our interest.”' https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2018/dec/07/norwegian-politicians-reject-uks-norway-plus-brexit-plan

And let's be honest - Brexit is still going better than when several American states decided to leave a federal system that did not adequately respect their property owning markets.

I suspect your sympathies would be starkly different if the Trump administration started demanding control of Canada's immigration policies, bilateral trade deals, and health-and-safety regulations as conditions for continued free trade with the U.S.

Why? The Canadians would be welcome to refuse such terms, just as the British are rejecting the terms of being an EU member with access to the common market. Nobody is forced into the EU, and as the British are seemingly on the brink of demonstrating, any nation is free to leave, even without any deal at all. The UK will take back total control, while enjoying all the benefits and privileges of being a non-member of the EU.

The reason for posting the Norwegian perspective on what the British seem to want is that the British really and truly want their cake and to eat it too. The strange thing is, nobody cares about what the UK wants in trade deals, they only care about their own benefit. Whether that be the meanies in the EU, the meanies in Norway, or as the British are likely to discover (assuming they did not bother to read what Major said about America's perspective), the meanies in charge of American trade policy (has little to nothing to do with any specific administration, as decades long trade disputes demonstrate).

"...the British seem to want is that the British really and truly want their cake and to eat it too"

Having your cake and eating it too meaning -- like Canada -- the ability to trade freely with a larger partner without surrendering sovereign control over immigration, health-and-safety regulations, and trade relations with other countries?

A country desiring (and expecting) to enjoy both independence and also free trade with neighbors seems to me to be something that has been and should be considered normal, not pie-in-the-sky dreaming.

'Having your cake and eating it too meaning ...'

That the British seem to expect to get what they want, merely by wanting it, and rejecting what they don't want - and to have everyone simply go along. As it became painfully apparent in the last several weeks that May's deal was not going to be passed, some Brexiters/Leave sympathizers started talking about a Norway+ deal. Strangely, though, the Norwegians have been saying since Brexit was voted on that there is no option for the British involving (re-)joining the EEC.

None.

It has been bizarre watching this whole process. At this point, it is likely that the British will enjoy all the privileges and benefits of being a non-member of the EU on March 30, 2019. They will not have to pay any of their EU obligations, they can make trade agreements with anyone they want, remove and deny entrance to people they no longer want in their country as they wish, etc.

Strangely, though, they still wish to have full access to the common market, and apparently it is the EU's fault that the British will be leaving on March 30, 2019 without getting whatever the UK wanted after deciding on Brexit.

'should be considered normal'

In Europe, centuries have proven that war is normal. War between states that enjoyed independence to make war freely on their neighbors.

The EU has never been about free trade, not from its very start, a quarter of century before the British joined.

In fairness, it's mostly internal elements within business in the UK who are agitating for giving the EU those powers in order to obtain "frictionless trade".

The EU itself has mostly said nothing in the direction of not having a free trade deal of a sort with the UK, while delegating those powers back the UK. Canada+ would be fine by them.

The shady bit on the EU's part are mostly the exploitation of the Irish border problem to force the UK into a bad position. But even that they could not do that if British politicians and business did not allow them to.

I don't support the EU as a model. clockwork is quite open about its dream of using an economic imperialism to prevent warfare, one which will either certainly fail on the one hand, or would prove unnecessary once everyone is basically democratic members of the same military alliance and you remove German and French dictators (and they are, saliently, German and French dicatators) from the picture.

But let's be clear what it is doing and what it isn't. And it could not succeed in doing what it tries to do, if it were not for business lobbying for national capitulation.

'Canada+ would be fine by them.'

Certainly - though that means the City is not allowed to operate in the EU.

'are mostly the exploitation of the Irish border problem'

What is shady about the EU supporting one of its members in a question involving a soon to be non-member of the EU? Watch and see how this plays out with Gibraltar, by the way. The EU was interested in preventing two members from squabbling too much - now that the UK will be leaving, the EU will support Spain against the UK. As that is actually one of the real benefits and privileges of being a member of the EU, one that does not involve free trade.

'certainly fail on the one hand'

On both hands - war will undoubtedly return to a continent that has experienced it for century after century. Or never left - the Yugoslavian wars were as ugly as one would expect, and what is going on in Ukraine certainly seems akin to war.

One has to admire how a common internal market without barriers, on the model that exists in intrastate trade in the U.S. is called by some 'economic imperialism.'

Shady in the sense that the backstop is framed and designed, not that the EU is as free to pool its political will or not as it wishes to be. But more fool Britain if we go for it (the current parliamentary calculus is that we won't though).

It's always funny to read your views about how the City wants to operate within the EU under EU regulation, and that not doing so will break the power of the City, whereas I tend to find when I have discussed online with people who work in the City (perhaps biased toward Brexit neutral), they are the least bothered about Brexit and the most optimistic about survival and opportunity and future growth.

Makes sense really, as their services are the most globally tradeable, least bound by trade gravity, and the EU is not particularly an open financial services market.

It's the manufacturers, retail and industries kept alive by low wage labour and the thin margin farmers that tend most rightly to be the most concerned. They'll probably lose power in Britain relative to the City, but the City will possibly not lose any power in the wider world.

On economic empire, Macron is one of those that said that the EU should become a "peaceful empire" (unless he's been that mistranslated from German by the perfidious Anglo press; I'm sure you can read the original where I can't). The US's expansion it certainly was colonisation on a massive scale, but you miss the point by using it as an analogy; once those colonial states were built the US never transferred powers en masse to the federal government from state governments as the EU seeks to do across Europe, and certainly if they ever did not to force proud nations together under the hubristic goal of preventing war. I would call it an imperialistic use of economics, because it is using them an instrument seeks to wither the sovereign states and to build a new political order which is really an empire and unify multiple nations together under that, not because I imagine that every internal market is a kind of economic imperialism.

+1.

Prior doesn't really have a good grip on the UK factions involved. He should stick to his German car industry.

Canada just signed a « free trade » deal where the US veto over whom Canada can negotiate another deal as well as giving US control over how much, at what price and to whom Canada can sell dairy products....

Not exactly. The U.S. could choose to exit the agreement if Canada negotiated a trade deal with China. But the U.S. could choose to exit the agreement with six months notice for any reason, so the anti-China provision doesn't have that much impact. Still, yes, it's more unwelcome Trump protectionism, but it's still small beer compared to the conditions in the Brexit deal.

'compared to the conditions in the Brexit deal'

There is an excellent chance of that not being any deal at all, and the UK will enjoy full freedom to handle its trade as it sees fit.

That it won't enjoy full access to the common market in that case is painfully obvious to everyone except those people in the UK who still seem to believe that the German car industry will have a chat with Merkel, and Germany will then force the EU to give the British what they want.

Li Yuan agreeing with Cowen: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/10/business/huawei-meng-arrest-travel.html The arrest of Meng Wanzhou cannot be separated from John Bolton's obsession with Iran: Bolton has been agitating for war with Iran since GWB was elected president. With the arrest of Meng, Bolton is seeking the trifecta: war with Iran, war with China, and war with reason. How do ignoramuses, ignoramuses with an ax to grind like Bolton, end up in positions of power in Republican administrations?

If the Red Chinesedo not want war, maybe they should cease aggression.

Re: "The arrest of Meng Wanzhou cannot be separated from John Bolton's obsession with Iran"

Bolton appears to have been aware of the arrest prior to its announcement, but there is no reason that I am aware of to believe that he was involved in it in any way.

Absent new evidence, it would be more accurate to say that despite initial appearances, the arrest of Meng Wanzhou cannot be connected to John Bolton's obsession with Iran.

The US is a rogue empire. They occupy Japan, Germany, Iraq, Syria ...

"best yet" -and self commending
historically haven't there have been a lotta pretty squirrelly arrests of
americans in the squirrelier parts of the world

Not unrelated:

"An eight-year campaign to slash the [IRS] budget has left it understaffed, hamstrung and operating with archaic equipment. The result: billions less to fund the government. That’s good news for corporations and the wealthy."

https://www.propublica.org/article/how-the-irs-was-gutted

I agree with Tyler that stretching the law for offshore arrest is risky, but we do also have a problem of mild enforcement on white collar crime.

It is not only the White House that believes crimes by friends are not crimes, it is the tip of the iceberg.

Revenue is at an all time high. It's a SPENDING problem we have, and yes, Trump is bad on that.

"The West’s dirty little secret is ...": dear God, Mr C, has it really come to this?

Should we address you as Tyler Cliché?

We don't know the facts involving Meng's alleged wrongdoing so we don't know if her arrest was justified or a good idea. We all agree that the US shouldn't abuse its power but whether this arrest is an abuse is unknowable at this point notwithstanding the propaganda emanating from the PRC.

No such thing as propaganda from the USA.

Three Felonies a Day -- international edition!

https://www.amazon.com/Three-Felonies-Day-Target-Innocent/dp/1594035229

Tyler... how can you anti-brexit when you make a statement like: "The European Union, like the United States, is exploiting the value of the legal and commercial network it has created."?

It may be that Trump was unaware that Meng was going to be arrested and almost certainly did not know it was going to happen on the day that it did. But this was not the "Deep State." It is clear that whoever is behind this did it to punish her and Huawei for maybe breaking the illegal sanctions against Iran by the US. But the US deep state, the Pentagon, State Dept, and CIA, opposed these stupid anti-Iran sanctions. This is Trumpsters at it, even if they were not keeping him informed on a moment to moment basis (and he seems to have attention problems anyway).

Of course that is not what she was arrested for officially, and I think if it had been for violating the sanctions, the Canadians would not have gone along with it as they view the US sanctions as being as illegal as do the Chinese and most other nations on the planet. She was arrested for supposedly making false statements to financial institutions, although it is my understanding that they were ones in Hong Kong, not US ones, although perhaps they were the Hong Kong outlets of US ones. In any case, this looks like a major stretch of authority by the US, with her supposedly up for being extradited to the US rather than tried in Canada. Frankly, the Canadians would probably do everybody a favor to let her go. This is an absurd and embarrassing and dangerous farce.

I'm not sure this is the right fight to pick. From my understanding, the US is aggressive about enforcing sanctions laws, they certainly prosecute American companies and their officers for violating such laws.

If this legal action were out of character for the US, Tyler would have a good point. But as is, Tyler's asking for a "too big to prosecute" theory of law enforcement, which is kinda scary.

I'm puzzled by how extraterritoriality interacts with the usual requirement for extradition: that the crime be a crime in both jurisdictions.

If I rob a bank in London and flee to Spain, the UK will apply for extradition. They will make the point that had I robbed a bank in Madrid I would have broken Spanish law. Which proves that the offense is a crime in both jurisdictions.

But suppose I rob a bank in Rome and flee to Spain and the City of London police, in their self appointed roll of guardian of all the world's banks, want to extradite me to London to face trial for robbing an Italian bank.

If the Spanish authorities also claim extraterritorial power, not only is my crime a crime in Spain, but the Spanish authorities can try me in Spain. If the Spanish authorities do not claim extraterritorial power, my crime is not a crime in Spain, so I can neither be arrested or extradited. (until the Italians finish their siesta and apply to extradite me to Rome :-)

In neither case do I get extradited to London.

I expect it work the same way in Canada. Either the Canadians try Meng Wanzhou in Canada for the sanctions busting she carried out in China, or, disclaiming extraterritorial power, they refuse to extradite her to USA

The extradition treaty between the US and Canada explicitly lays out which crimes are extraditable. Fraud is one that is. Breaking economic sanctions on a third nation is not. Meng can only be extradited for fraud, however some reports say that what she has been indicted for in the sealed endictment out of southern New York is breaking the sanctions, which would not be extradictable. There is no doubt that they are going after her really for breaking the sanctions supposedly, but to extradite her they must have indicted her for committing fraud.

Nobody is mentioning how this will affect Shanghai and Hong Kong...and their desires to be economic capitals. The result of Beijing arresting a western executive will drive regional head offices to Tokyo & Taipei. And of course, all the economic activity that goes with them. Thus conferences, think tanks, etc....

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