Robert Lloyd Schellenberg was given the death penalty by Chinese court on Monday. (Photo: Intermediate Peoples’ Court of Dalian)
Ottawa's claims about China's conviction of Robert Lloyd Schellenberg, a Canadian drug smuggler, are "far from the truth," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said at a regular press conference Tuesday.
Schellenberg, a Canadian national convicted of smuggling over 222 kilograms of methamphetamines, was sentenced to death on Monday by the Dalian Intermediate People's Court in Northeast China's Liaoning Province.
On hearing the news, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau expressed "extreme concern" and told reporters that "China has chosen to begin to arbitrarily apply a death penalty," according to the Washington Post.
The "arbitrary" judgment accusation is really "far from the truth," Hua responded.
"Did the speaker carefully read the information published in the Dalian Intermediate People's Court on this case beforehand? Has he seriously studied the relevant laws of China?" Hua asked.
The relevant information issued by the Dalian Intermediate People's Court was very detailed. His crimes are clear and the evidence is true and sufficient, Hua added.
Drug-related crimes are recognized as serious crimes in the world. They cause serious social harm which all countries crack down on, and so does China. All are equal before the law, this is the spirit of the rule of law.
"The Canadian side's remarks lack the minimum spirit of the rule of law. We express our strong dissatisfaction and urge the Canadian side to respect the rule of law, respect China's judicial sovereignty, correct mistakes, and stop publishing irresponsible remarks," Hua said.