export-controls 05 December 2019

US charges international ring with sanctions evasion

The US Department of Justice has said that a ‘newly unsealed superseding indictment’ has charged non-US nationals alongside a ‘U.S. citizen and various companies in a conspiracy to evade international trade sanctions.’

The indictment, unsealed in the Southern District of Georgia, charges ‘two Russian nationals, two Italian nationals, a U.S. citizen, and various companies with violating and conspiring the violate the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) and the Export Control Reform Act of 2018 (ECRA), conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and conspiracy to commit money laundering.’

It says that ‘Oleg Vladislavovich Nikitin; Nikitin’s Russian-based company KS Engineering (KSE); KSE employee Anton Cheremukhin; Gabriele Villone; Villone’s Italian-based company GVA International Oil and Gas Services (GVA); and GVA employee Bruno Caparini’ are charged ‘with violating and conspiring to violate IEEPA/ECRA’ and that ‘Dali Bagrou, and Bagrou’s U.S.-based company World Mining and Oil Supply (WMO) are charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering.’

‘This prosecution demonstrates the high priority the Department of Justice places on the enforcement of U.S. restrictions on exports to Russia’s oil and gas industry. The U.S. government imposed these restrictions following the Russian annexation of Crimea and its use of force in Ukraine. Russia continues to undermine democratic processes and institutions in that region and adversely affects our national security,’ said Assistant Attorney General for National Security John C. Demers.

See: https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/department-justice-announces-indictment-charging-russians-italians-and-others-attempting