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China Releases Canadian Teacher Detained for Job Violation

01 January 2019

Ms McIver had been working at a school in China when she was held over issues with her work visa.

A Canadian who was detained in China earlier this month has now been released and is now back home, according to government officials.

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.

Walker, however, refused any further information about McIver's return to Canada.

A government spokesman did not specify when the Canadian was released or returned to Canada.

Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying has treated McIver's case much more briskly when it's come up in the ministry's daily news conferences.

China and Canada both insisted McIver's case was different from Kovrig's and Spavor's.

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Global Affairs Canada Department confirmed that their citizen had been released, but did not name the person.

Her arrest was announced shortly after the detention of two other Canadian nationals - former diplomat Michael Kovrig, employed by think tank International Crisis Group, and Michael Spavor, a consultant on North Korea.

In the decision, the court noted that Canadian diplomats were in court for the appeal.

Neither China nor Canada has drawn a direct connection between the Meng case and the cases of the two other Canadians.

Robert Lloyd Schellenberg was tried in 2016 but his case has been publicized by the Chinese press following the December 1 arrest in Vancouver of Meng Wanzhou, the chief financial officer of tech giant Huawei, on US charges related to trading with Iran. Meng Wanzhou, the chief financial officer of electronics giant Huawei Technologies, is wanted in the United States on allegations she lied to American banks as part of an effort to get around sanctions on Iran.

Evidence also showed he was not merely an accomplice but someone who had played an "important role" in smuggling drugs into China, the court added. The last foreigner to be tried for drug smuggling was British national Akmal Shaikh, who was caught in 2007 while smuggling over 4 kilograms of heroin into China.

China Releases Canadian Teacher Detained for Job Violation