Share

China sentences Canadian to death, raises diplomatic tension

Share

BEIJING (AP) — A Chinese court sentenced a Canadian man to death Monday in a sudden retrial in a drug smuggling case that is likely to escalate tensions between the countries over the arrest of a top Chinese technology executive.

The court in northeastern Liaoning province announced that it had given Robert Lloyd Schellenberg the death penalty after rejecting his plea of innocence and convicting him of being an accessory to drug smuggling. It gave no indication that the penalty could be commuted, but Schellenberg’s fate could become intertwined in diplomatic negotiations over China’s demand for the top executive’s release.

Schellenberg was detained more than four years ago and initially sentenced to 15 years in prison in 2016. But suddenly last month, an appeals court agreed with prosecutors who said the sentence was too lenient, and scheduled Monday’s retrial with just four days’ notice.

The Chinese press began publicizing Schellenberg’s case in December after Canada detained Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of the Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei, on Dec. 1 at the request of the United States.

Since then, China has arrested two Canadians in apparent retaliation for Meng’s arrest.

Trending:
NY Governor Kathy Hochul Melts Down After Supreme Court Strikes Down Her State's Unconstitutional Gun Restriction

It arrested both Michael Kovrig, a former diplomat, and Michael Spavor, a businessman, on suspicion of endangering national security. A Canadian teacher was detained but released.

Schellenberg’s lawyer, Zhang Dongshuo, said his client now has 10 days to appeal.

The court said it ruled Monday that Schellenberg was involved in an international drug smuggling operation. It said he was recruited to help smuggle more than 222 kilograms (488 pounds) of methamphetamine from a warehouse in Dalian city to Australia. A Chinese person convicted of involvement in the same operation was earlier given a suspended death sentence.

Fifty people, including Canadian diplomats and foreign and domestic media, attended Monday’s trial, the court said in an online statement.

In 2009, China executed a Briton, Akmal Shaikh, on charges of smuggling heroin despite his supporters’ protest that he was mentally ill.

The Western Journal has not reviewed this Associated Press story prior to publication. Therefore, it may contain editorial bias or may in some other way not meet our normal editorial standards. It is provided to our readers as a service from The Western Journal.

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →



We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

Tags:
Share
The Associated Press is an independent, not-for-profit news cooperative headquartered in New York City. Their teams in over 100 countries tell the world’s stories, from breaking news to investigative reporting. They provide content and services to help engage audiences worldwide, working with companies of all types, from broadcasters to brands.
The Associated Press was the first private sector organization in the U.S. to operate on a national scale. Over the past 170 years, they have been first to inform the world of many of history's most important moments, from the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and the bombing of Pearl Harbor to the fall of the Shah of Iran and the death of Pope John Paul.

Today, they operate in 263 locations in more than 100 countries relaying breaking news, covering war and conflict and producing enterprise reports that tell the world's stories.
Location
New York City




Conversation