Businessman sought in China graft probe seeks Canada refugee status

Wed Jun 24, 2015 3:37am EDT
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By Rod Nickel

WINNIPEG, Manitoba (Reuters) - A businessman on China's most-wanted list of people accused of corruption argued in a Canadian court on Tuesday that he deserves refugee protection.

Cheng Muyang, known in Vancouver as developer Michael Ching, asked a judge to review a November ruling by the Canadian refugee board that denied him protection.

In April, China's Interpol office released the names of 100 people wanted in its "Sky Net" anti-graft campaign.

The list included Ching, son of a once high-ranking Chinese official removed from office for graft in 2003.

Ching's lawyer, David Matas, contested the board's position that there was reason to consider that he committed a crime.

Matas said the allegations centered on a 10 million yuan ($1.6 million) sale of a Beijing property to the province of Hebei, where Ching's father was a top official.

Matas said there was no evidence other than testimony obtained by torture, and that China's Communist party was trying to get to Ching's father.

"There is no crime. It's just a property matter," Matas said.   Continued...