Global

Canadian detained in China has been released

Canadian detained in China has been released

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Schellenberg's trial comes amid reports in global media that another Canadian, Sarah McIver - who was taken into "administrative detention" for "working illegally" in China - has been released and has returned to Canada.

Teacher Sarah McIver, from Alberta, was held for "unlawfully working in China".

The European Union says it supports Ottawa in the struggle over three Canadians detained in China, and that two of them are being blocked from seeing a lawyer.

A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said Canadians Michael Kovrig, right, and Michael Spavor were arrested for allegedly undermining Chinese "national security, ' while Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou was arrested 'illegally" in Canada for the U.S.

A Canadian man convicted of drug smuggling in China could face the death penalty after an appeals court found his initial 15-year jail sentence too lenient and ordered a retrial.

Both China and Canada have said that McIver's case is different from Kovrig's and Spavor's.

Robert Lloyd Schellenberg had lodged an appeal after being handed a 15-year sentence on Nov 20 in the north-eastern city of Dalian, the high court for the province of Liaoning said in a statement, adding that he was to have been deported after serving his sentence.

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The sentencing of foreign drug dealers in China has drawn a lot of attention overseas and some foreign governments strongly oppose the results, but Chinese judicial principle is never affected, which rules that "anyone who commits crimes in the territory of China would be judged equally as said by China's Criminal Law", Ruan Qilin, a professor at the China University of Political Science and Law, told the Global Times on Thursday.

Global Affairs Canada, the government department that manages Ottawa's diplomatic and consular relations, confirmed that the Canadian teacher is back home without naming the person.

Drugs offences are routinely punished severely in China.

China arrested a former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig and businessman Michael Spavor separately on suspicion of endangering China's national security.

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

China's Foreign Ministry said in a statement sent to Reuters that it was aware of reports she had been released, and referred further questions to the "relevant authority".

"They are airing it in public as a showcase of their power and potential to put pressure on Canada", she said.

Her arrest has also heaped uncertainty on efforts by Washington and Beijing to reduce tensions in their trade war.


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