Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. has filed a complaint against the US government in a federal court against the ban on the sales of company products imposed by the Congress. The case is filed challenging the constitutionality of Section 889 of the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which gives power to the government to impose prohibition on certain telecommunications and video surveillance services or equipment it deems is putting national security on risk.
The US government has banned Huawei from selling networking equipment, alleging the company for spying on US citizens on behalf of China. Through this action, Huawei seeks a declaratory judgment that the restrictions targeting Huawei “are unconstitutional,” and a permanent injunction against these restrictions.
“The US Congress has repeatedly failed to produce any evidence to support its restrictions on Huawei products. We are compelled to take this legal action as a proper and last resort. This ban not only is unlawful, but also restricts Huawei from engaging in fair competition, ultimately harming U.S. consumers. We look forward to the court's verdict, and trust that it will benefit both Huawei and the American people,” Guo Ping, Huawei Rotating Chairman, said in a statement.
The lawsuit was filed in a US District Court in Plano, Texas. According to the complaint, Section 889 of the 2019 NDAA not only bars all US Government agencies from buying Huawei equipment and services, but also bars them from contracting with or awarding grants or loans to third parties who buy Huawei equipment or services, without any executive or judicial process.
Huawei says that this violates the Bill of Attainder Clause and the Due Process Clause as well as the Separation-of-Powers principles enshrined in the US Constitution, because Congress is both making the law, and attempting to adjudicate and execute it. Song Liuping, Huawei's Chief Legal Officer, stressed that Section 889 is based on “numerous false, unproven, and untested propositions.”
“Contrary to the statute's premise, Huawei is not owned, controlled, or influenced by the Chinese government. Moreover, Huawei has an excellent security record and program. No contrary evidence has been offered,” Song added. John Suffolk, Huawei’s Global Cyber Security & Privacy Officer said that the company is proud because it’s the most open, transparent, and scrutinised company in the world.
“If this law is set aside, as it should be, Huawei can bring more advanced technologies to the United States and help it build the best 5G networks. Huawei is willing to address the US Government's security concerns. Lifting the NDAA ban will give the US Government the flexibility it needs to work with Huawei and solve real security issues,” Guo Ping added.
Interestingly, the case comes a month after US charged the Chinese tech company with bank fraud, Iran sanctions violations and stolen trade secrets. A 13-count indictment was filed in New York where the Justice Department claimed Huawei had misled a global bank as well as the US authorities about its relationship with two subsidiaries, Skycom Tech and Huawei Device USA Inc to conduct business in Iran. The company was also charged with ten counts of stealing trade secrets and obstructing justice in a separate case.
Photo Caption: (From Left to Right) Guo Ping, Rotating Chairman of Huawei, Dr.Song Liuping,Senior Vice President and the Chief Legal Officer for Huawei, John Suffolk, Senior Vice President and Global Cyber Security & Privacy Officer (GSPO) for Huawei, Glen D. Nager, Partner at Jones Day, Lead Counsel of this action, Dr.Yang Chaobin, President of Huawei’s 5G Product Line, Li Dafeng, Executive Member of the Supervisory Board, Director of the ICT Infrastructure Managing Board Office. (Source: Huawei)