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OFAC Sanctions Quartet Of Petrochemical Firms For Allegedly Aiding Illicit Transfer Of Iranian Oil

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Last week the Federal government announced sanctions against a quartet of petrochemical firms they say are providing help to the Iranian petroleum industry despite longstanding sanctions.

The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) says the four firms have collectively moved hundreds of millions of dollars worth of exports from Iran’s national oil company. Iran’s national oil company has long been accused by the U.S. government of supporting Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force (IRGC-QF) and proxy groups, both of which have been linked to terrorist activities around the world.

One of the newly-sanctioned firms is based in Hong Kong and believed by the U.S. government to have played a part in shipments of Iranian oil to buyers in United Arab Emirates and China in such a way as to obscure the source of the oil.

A second firm now under sanction is also based in Hong Kong and is accused by the U.S. government of cooperating with a third firm in Shanghai to transfer Iranian oil after the expiration of any applicable significant reduction exceptions and in contravention of U.S. sanctions.

The fourth firm now under sanction is based in Dubai and is alleged by the U.S. government to have transferred the equivalent of several millions of dollars to the Iranian national oil company last year. OFAC says the year before the firm also agreed to help obscure the origin of Iranian oil as it was shipped to the United Arab Emirates.

In addition to sanctions on the firms levied by OFAC, the United States Department of State concurrently sanction several of the same firms and their senior officers due to these allegations as well.

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