For its part, the Chinese government has guaranteed the cost of installing Huawei equipment in an effort to dominate networks from Latin America to the Middle East.
Ms. Meng came to personify that effort. Her determination to cable Tehran at a time when the West was trying to contain Iran’s nuclear program sparked protests among US officials. For that reason, some Chinese hardliners objected on Friday to the news that the charges were being dropped.
“It sends the wrong message to Chinese businessmen around the world that they are allowed to engage in fraudulent transactions with Iran and North Korea,” said Michael Pillsbury, a Hudson Institute scientist who was a top advisor in China on former President Donald J. Trump. “I fear that another part of the message has been that the Biden team has agreed to sell Huawei some types of chips and technology, which will also undermine the message that Huawei should not be involved in our friends’ 5G telecommunications systems. and allies.”
Huawei made a frantic effort in Washington and Canada to free Ms. Meng. But she refused to plead guilty to bank and wire transfer fraud that resulted from Huawei’s Iran deal. Months later, she agreed to a stay of charges, which will eventually lead to the dropping of all charges against her.
The case began when Canadian authorities Ms. Meng, 49, were arrested in December 2018 at the request of the United States. She owns two imposing homes in Vancouver, and was allowed to stay there with an ankle bracelet to track her whereabouts. She eventually settled in her gated seven-bedroom mansion in the city’s exclusive Shaughnessy neighborhood, where she received painting lessons and private massages.
She instantly became one of the world’s most famous detainees — especially since she’s the daughter of famed Huawei founder and chief executive Ren Zhengfei, a former People’s Liberation Army officer who turned his small telecommunications company into a national champion.
In January 2019, the Ministry of Justice indicted Huawei and Ms. Meng. While the charges focused on bank and wire transfer fraud, the Justice Department, when announcing the charges, alleged that Huawei employees, including Ms. Meng, lied to bank officials when asked whether Huawei was illegally doing business with Iran, knowing that the U.S. sanctions on Tehran would deter the banks from financing the sale.