Tagged: ofac

JP Morgan Chase Bank Settles “Old” Sanctions Case for $5 Million

The Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Asset Control (“OFAC”) announced its third enforcement action for 2018.  While OFAC has been busy with implementing new sanctions regimes and re-imposing the Iran sanctions regime, OFAC is beginning to clear some of the enforcement matters that have been pending. JP Morgan Chase agreed to a $5.2 million settlement with OFAC for 87 apparent violations from the processing of...

OFAC Begins to Re-Impose Iran Sanctions and Expands Reach of Previous Sanctions

The Trump Administration issued a new executive order on August 6, 2018, in order to reimpose the first tranche of the Iran sanctions lifted by the former Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (“JCPOA”).  In doing so, the executive order consolidates relevant sanctions authorities and broadens the scope of the previous restrictions. Companies will now have to comply with a renewed set of secondary sanctions, and...

Turning Back the Clock – OFAC Plans to Reimpose Iran Sanctions Program

History does not repeat itself but it often rhymes — Mark Twain (although there is disagreement if Twain uttered these exact words (see here)). Just as businesses were growing or planning to grow into Iran, they had the proverbial rug pulled out from under them. Last week, on May 8, 2018, the administration announced its intention to withdraw from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action...

New Sanctions Law Complicates Trade Compliance

Politics and sanctions law go hand-in-hand. In a rare instance of bi-partisanship, Congress united to constrain the administration’s ability to modify the existing sanctions program against Russia. At the same time, Congress expanded the sanctions regime for Russia, Iran and North Korea. The administration was forced to sign the bill given the overwhelming vote in favor of the measure. As a result, compliance practitioners have...

ZTE Pays the Price for Circumventing Sanctions and Export Controls

Here is a real zinger – clients sometimes do not tell their lawyers the truth. I will wait a minute while you get off the floor because I know everyone is shocked and amazed that this happens. But in the recent ZTE case, which we will discuss, the client company lied several times to its in-house and outside counsel resulting in false representations to the...

Dig a Little Deeper: The Importance of Beneficial Ownership

Companies interact with a large number of entities in the outside world – customers, third party intermediaries and vendors and suppliers to name the most significant ones. These relationships are the lifeblood of a company. In today’s world, companies have to know with whom they are dealing – not just the name of the company, not just the officers of the company, but the natural...

President Obama Pledges to Lift Myanmar Sanctions

Jacqui Merrill, an associate at The Volkov Law Group, rejoins us for a posting on the Myanmar Sanctions.  Jacqui can be reached at jmerrill@volkovlaw.com. On September 14, 2016, President Obama met with Myanmar’s leader, State Counsellor Daw Aung Suu Kyi, at the White House and announced the United States’ intent to remove economic sanctions against Myanmar (formerly known as Burma) in the near future.  The President...

Anti-Corruption, Sanctions and Export and Import Risks

Forgive me for overusing the term “convergence” but when the shoe fits, I say “wear it.”   If you are managing corporate risks and are responsible for securing export licenses, ensuring that you are complying with OFAC sanctions requirements, interacting with customs and immigration officials around the globe, and conducting third party due diligence to onboard a new agent or distributor, there is no question that...

New York Department of Financial Services Issues New AML and Sanctions Regulations

The New York DFS finalized its new AML and Sanctions screening regulations. Interestingly, the NYDFS backed off its original proposal to require a Chief Compliance Officer to certify to a compliance “finding” that the bank or other covered entities maintain an adequate AML and sanctions compliance program. In its place, the NYDFS regulations require an annual certification from senior management, i.e. those responsible for “management,...

Sanctions Updates: Iran, Myanmar (Burma) and Cuba

With the rise of OFAC Sanctions enforcement and compliance issues, companies have to devote significant resources to following changes in OFAC Sanctions. Over the last few years, the US government has significantly altered the sanctions landscape with the Iran Nuclear Treaty, and major changes in its relationship with Cuba and Myanmar (Burma). Since the major changes have been announced or implemented, there have been continuing...