Reuters today reports that the U.S. investigation into Huawei’s potential violation of sanctions involves “an alleged scheme to use the global banking system to evade U.S. sanctions against Iran.” The U.S. has been looking into Huawei’s behavior since 2016, and recently focused on the company’s use of HSBC to hide transactions made with Iran. HSBC was itself investigated by the U.S. Attorney’s office in Brooklyn for violating sanctions and money-laundering laws, and paid a fine of $1.92 billion in 2012. Reuters’ source says HSBC is not under investigation at this time. The U.S. took dramatic action on its investigation when it had Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou arrested in Canada. Meng is expected to be extradited to the U.S. The U.S. has maintained for some time that Huawei represents a security threat due to its ties with the Chinese government. Representatives from Huawei and HSBC declined to comment on Reuters’ story. Earlier this year, China-based ZTE was penalized by the government for similar transgressions involving Iran.
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