Tagged: OFAC sanctions

Episode 153 — Mighty Amazon Falls to the OFAC Sword

Amazon joins the exclusive club of high-tech OFAC violators.  Last year, Apple settled with OFAC for sanctions violations.  This year, we can add Amazon to the list of OFAC violators. On July 8, 2020, Amazon settled with OFAC for $134,523 for violations of multiple OFAC sanctions programs.  Amazon’s violations stemmed from deficiencies from its sanctions screening processes.  As a result, Amazon provided goods and services:...

Antitrust Compliance Lessons Learned from Chicken Price-Fixing investigation and Indictment (Part III of III)

The Antitrust Division’s recent indictment of the boiler chicken executives provided an important reminder to compliance officers on the importance of an effective antitrust compliance program.  With last year’s Guidance on Antitrust Compliance, DOJ has provided a roadmap for compliance officers to design and implement an effective compliance program.  Executive Level Participation and C-Suite Risk Assessment:  As described in the indictment, the price-fixing and bid-rigging...

Treasury, State Department and Coast Guard Issue Advisory and Guidance on Maritime Industry Deceptive Shipping Practices

In response to an increase in deceptive shipping practices, on May 14, 2020, the State Department, Treasury Department and the Coast Guard issued a warning to the maritime industry, and those involved in the energy and metals sectors, concerning deceptive shipping practices used to evade sanctions.  The focus of concerns appears to be actors seeking to circumvent  sanctions against Iran, North Korea and Syria. The...

Practical Risk-Based Ranking Strategies to Beneficial Ownership Issues (Part III of IV)

At the outset, if you have a headache after reading my first two posts on the beneficial ownership issue, I apologize.  The issues twist and turn depending on whether the situation involves OFAC sanctions or corruption risks, and reflects the variety of ownership situations that occur. Given the overwhelming nature of the burden of a beneficial ownership risk mitigation strategy, we have to return to...

Episode 141 — Practical Approaches to Managing Beneficial Ownership Risks (Part II of II)

In a two-part series, Michael Volkov examines the continuing problem of identifying and mitigating beneficial ownership risks.  Money launderers and corrupt individuals continue to rely on corporate structures to disguise their ownership interests to further illicit schemes.  Companies have to develop strategies that practically address the risks without dedicating disproportionate resources to the problem. In the first episode, Michael Volkov discusses beneficial ownership risks and...

OFAC Releases Guidance on Sanctions Compliance During the Pandemic

Elizabeth Slim, Senior Consultant at The Volkov Law Group joins us for an important posting on OFAC sanctions compliance as a result of the pandemic.  Elizabeth can be reached at eslim@volkovlaw.com. It was only a matter of time before regulators and law enforcement recognized the impact that the pandemic has had on our country and our economy – The Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”)...

Episode 130 — Practical Strategies for OFAC Sanctions Risk Assessments

The Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Asset Control (“OFAC”) is aggressively enforcing OFAC sanctions rules.  Last year, OFAC issued its Framework for Sanctions Compliance Programs, which includes a specific requirement for companies to conduct a “holistic” risk assessment. In this episode, Michael Volkov outlines practical strategies for conducting a sanctions risk assessment.

OFAC’s New §501.604 Reporting Requirement: A Small Change with a Big Impact

Matt Stankiewicz, Senior Associate, and Jessica Sanderson, Of Counsel, both at The Volkov Law Group, rejoin us for an interesting posting on a new OFAC reporting requirement. Matt can be contacted at mstankiewicz@volkovlaw.com, and Jessica can be contacted at jsanderson@volkovlaw.com. On June 21, 2019, OFAC changed its requirements for reporting on blocked or rejected transactions under 31 C.F.R. §501.604.  With little fanfare, the interim rule...

Catching Up with OFAC Sanctions Enforcement Actions

OFAC is clearly sending a message about sanctions enforcement and compliance responsibilities.  OFAC is aggressively seeking out new targets for enforcement.  OFAC continues to focus on Iran, Cuba, Venezuela and North Korea, aligning itself with current foreign policy objectives. Here is a brief outline of three recent enforcement actions: Western Union (HERE) — On June 7, 2019, OFAC released a settlement with Western Union under...