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Chinese court orders new trial for Canadian in drug case:The Asahi Shimbun

31 December 2018

On Friday, Global Affairs Canada said Sarah McIver, a teacher from Alberta who was detained in China after the arrests of Kovrig and Spavor, has returned to Canada after being released from custody. Part of a series.

McIver was the third Canadian to be detained by China following the 1 December arrest in Vancouver of Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of the Chinese telecommunications company Huawei.

A Canadian teacher was detained but released.

The Canadian government said earlier it was following the case but has released no details.

McIver's arrest followed those of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, two Canadians living and working in China, on allegations they were harming China's national security.

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Last week, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said McIver had received an "administrative penalty (for) illegal employment".

China and Canada both said Ms McIver's case was different from the other two.

They have each only been allowed to see Canadian diplomats once since being detained.

The high court in Liaoning, which heard Robert Lloyd Schellenberg's appeal Saturday, said in a statement that a previous ruling in November, which sentenced him to 15 years in jail and a 150,000 yuan ($21,800) forfeiture, was "obviously inappropriate" given the severity of his crimes.

The other two are a Canadian diplomat on leave and a Canadian businessperson trading with North Korea. She was contacted by Chinese authorities earlier this month regarding her visa.

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China severely punishes those caught smuggling or trafficking drugs, including foreigners.

In December 2009, China executed convicted drug smuggler Akmal Shaikh of the United Kingdom for smuggling 4,030 grams of heroin.

The Canadian national was held by local authorities and believed to have smuggled an "enormous amount" of drugs, ECNS, the English-language website of China News Service, reported citing runsky.com, a website run by the Dalian Radio and Television Station.

China also sentenced a Filipina drug trafficker to death in 2013, according to the Philippine foreign department, ignoring Manila's request to spare her life.

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Chinese court orders new trial for Canadian in drug case:The Asahi Shimbun