Canadian drug smuggler faces retrial as China says 15 yrs too lenient

Hugh Fox
January 1, 2019

Richard Walker, a spokesman for Global Affairs Canada, said Friday that McIver "was released and has now returned to Canada".

"Before she is going on trips, she makes sure everything is in order".

Since then, China has arrested two Canadians on charges of endangering national security in what appeared to be retaliation. She was the third Canadian to be detained by China following the December 1 arrest in Vancouver of Chinese telecom giant Huawei's Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou, the Guardian reported on Saturday.

Meng is sought by the United States for allegedly lying to banks as part of an effort to evade sanctions on Iran.

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Robert Lloyd Schellenberg, a Canadian citizen, will be put on trial by Northeast China's Liaoning Provincial High People's Court on drug smuggling charges, according to runsky, a website run by the Dalian Radio and Television Station, on Wednesday.

Schellenberg played an "important role" in drug smuggling and was potentially involved in worldwide organised drug trafficking activities, said the court, and passed his case back to the lower Dalian court for a retrial without specifying a date.

At the appeal hearing, prosecutors said the sentence was too light and improper, arguing Schellenberg was very likely to have been part of a worldwide drugs smuggling operation and had played a major role in smuggling the drugs.

Drugs offences are routinely punished severely in China.

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A Dalian government news portal said this week Schellenberg had smuggled "an enormous amount of drugs" into China.

The sentencing of foreign drug dealers in China has drawn a lot of attention overseas and some foreign governments strongly oppose the results, but Chinese judicial principle is never affected, which rules that "anyone who commits crimes in the territory of China would be judged equally as said by China's Criminal Law", Ruan Qilin, a professor at the China University of Political Science and Law, told the Global Times on Thursday.

Authorities have released no details of the accusations against Schellenberg.

According to previous reporting from Global News, McIver received an administrative penalty for illegal employment, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said at a daily news briefing.

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Her arrest has also heaped uncertainty on efforts by Washington and Beijing to reduce tensions in their trade war.

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