Chinese court upholds death sentence for Canadian in drugs case

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Beijing, Aug 10 :A Chinese court on Tuesday upheld the death sentence passed on a Canadian citizen for drug smuggling — one of a number of ongoing cases that have triggered a severe downturn in relations between Ottawa and Beijing.

Robert Lloyd Schellenberg was originally sentenced to 15 years in prison in late 2018, but that was changed to the death penalty just months later after a deepening diplomatic rift exploded between Ottawa and Beijing.

The Liaoning Province Higher People’s Court said in a statement that both the verdict and sentence had been upheld.

“The facts found in the first trial were clear, the evidence was reliable and sufficient, the conviction was accurate, the sentence was appropriate, and the trial procedures were legal,” it said.

The Canadian ambassador to China hit out at the ruling.

 “We condemn the verdict in the strongest possible terms and call on China to grant Robert clemency,” Dominic Barton told reporters