Xinhua News Agency on Monday cited unidentified Chinese authorities as saying former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig violated Chinese laws by acting as a spy and stealing Chinese state secrets and intelligence with the help of Canadian businessman Michael Spavor.
Both Kovrig and Spavor were arrested on Dec. 10 in what was widely seen as an attempt to pressure Canada to release Chinese executive Meng Wanzhou, who was arrested in Vancouver on Dec. 1 at the request of U.S. authorities.
Canada said last Friday that it will allow an extradition request for Meng to proceed.
On the same day, Meng’s legal team filed a notice of civil claim alleging “serious violations” of her constitutional rights, accusing officers of detaining and questioning her for three hours before notifying her of her arrest.
Meng is chief financial officer of Chinese tech giant Huawei and the daughter of its founder.
WATCH: Arguments over Huawei CFO’s extradition to U.S. to proceed