Beijing [China], August 11 (ANI): Canadian Michael Spavor, detained by China in 2018, has been sentenced to 11 years in prison by a Chinese court in Liaoning Province on charges of espionage, local media reported.
Spavor will be deported, but it was not clear when. The local court also said 50,000 yuan of Spavor's personal assets will be confiscated, China Global Television Network (CGTN) reported. Spavor got convicted for spying on state secrets and illegally providing them to overseas forces, CGTN added.
China detained Spavor in December 2018, a few days after Huawei's Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou was arrested in Vancouver. Along with Spavor, another Canadian national Michael Kovrig was detained. Kovrig is also awaiting a verdict following his trial, which ended in March.
Canadian nationals - former diplomat Kovrig and businessman Spavor - have been in Chinese detention on espionage charges. Ottawa, however, maintains that these are retaliatory measures for Canada's detention of Meng Wanzhou, who was detained in Vancouver in 2018 at the request of the United States.
This decision on Michael Spavor comes a day after a Chinese court on Tuesday upheld the death penalty for another Canadian Robert Schellenberg for drug smuggling, local media reported. Canada had strongly condemned Beijing's decision to uphold the death sentence against Schellenberg.
Sino-Canadian relations soured after the arrest of Meng and two Canadian nationals in China and have been further exacerbated by Ottawa's condemnation of Beijing's national security law implemented in Hong Kong and alleged human rights abuses in Xinjiang province. (ANI)