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Alberta teacher Sarah McIver returned to Canada after arrest in China

Alberta teacher Sarah McIver returned to Canada after arrest in China

The high court in Liaoning, which heard Robert Lloyd Schellenberg's appeal Saturday, said in a statement that a previous ruling in November, which sentenced him to 15 years in jail and a 150,000 yuan (USD 21,800) forfeiture, was "obviously inappropriate" given the severity of his crimes.

The appellate court ruled that the jail sentence handed down by the lower court was "obviously inappropriate" because Schellenberg is accused of "playing an important role" in what may be an worldwide drug smuggling ring, the court's announcement said.

"Due to the provisions under the Privacy Act, no further information can be disclosed".

McIver was the third Canadian to be detained by China following the 1 December arrest in Vancouver of Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of the Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei Technologies, but a Canadian official said there was no reason to believe that the woman's detention was linked to the earlier arrests.

A spokesperson for China's foreign affairs ministry said a Canadian was sanctioned for working without a permit, but didn't provide additional details.

Abigail Bimman looks at what Sarah McIver, Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig are facing.




They have each only been allowed to see Canadian diplomats once since being detained.

A Chinese government news portal, runsky.com, identified Schellenberg as Canadian and said he was accused of smuggling an "enormous amount" of drugs. Ms Meng was held at the request of United States prosecutors and faces extradition on charges of violating sanctions on Iran.

The relevant governmental departments confirmed with Global Times Schellenberg's identity as a Canadian citizen.

Schellenberg could face a much more severe penalty, including death, when he is retried.

Ms McIver's detention followed that of two other Canadians.

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.

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