U.S. Treasury Sanctions Individuals, Entities For Russia, DPRK Violations

by Ike Obudulu Posted on August 22nd, 2018

Washington D.C., USA :  U.S. Department of the Treasury on Tuesday announced sanctions on several individuals and entities over their involvement in actions against the US sanction measures on Russia and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK).

In an announcement, the Treasury targeted two entities and two Russian individuals “in order to counter attempts to evade US sanctions.”

They were involved in providing assistance to a sanctioned Russian entity.

“The Treasury Department is disrupting Russian efforts to circumvent our sanctions,” said US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.  “Today’s action against these deceptive actors is critical to ensure that the public is aware of the tactics undertaken by designated parties and that these actors remain blocked from the U.S. financial system.”

As a result of the sanctions, all property and interests of the designated persons subject to US jurisdiction are blocked, and US persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with them.

Designated Entities And Individuals

The individuals and entities identified below are being designated based on the actions they undertook for Divetechnoservices, a Russian entity sanctioned on June 11, 2018 pursuant to E.O. 13694, as amended, for procuring a variety of underwater equipment and diving systems for Russian government agencies, to include the Federal Security Service (FSB). The FSB was sanctioned on December 28, 2016, pursuant to E.O. 13694, as amended, and on March 15, 2018, pursuant to CAATSA Section 224.

Vela-Marine Ltd. was designated pursuant to E.O. 13694, as amended, for having attempted to act or purported to act for or on behalf of Divetechnoservices. As of July 2018, Divetechnoservices utilized Vela-Marine Ltd. in an attempt to circumvent U.S. sanctions.

Marina Igorevna Tsareva (Tsareva) was designated pursuant to E.O. 13694, as amended, for having acted for or on behalf of Divetechnoservices and Vela Marine Ltd. Tsareva has worked as an Import Manager for Divetechnoservices and attempted to help Divetechnoservices circumvent U.S. sanctions through Vela-Marine Ltd.

Anton Aleksandrovich Nagibin (Nagibin) was designated pursuant to E.O. 13694, as amended, for having acted for or on behalf of Divetechnoservices. As of July 2018, Nagibin was a Divetechnoservices’ employee involved in helping the company attempt to circumvent U.S. sanctions.

Lacno S.R.O. was designated pursuant to E.O. 13694, as amended, for having materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services in support of, Divetechnoservices. As of May 2018, Lacno S.R.O., which is based in Slovakia, attempted to facilitate a payment for over $20,000 on behalf of Divetechnoservices. As of April 2018, Divetechnoservices planned to utilize Lacno S.R.O. to purchase equipment.

In another separate announcement, the Treasury targeted two entities and six vessels for violating the UN and US sanctions on the DPRK.

They were accused of involvement in ship-to-ship transfer of refined petroleum products with DPRK-flagged vessels, an activity prohibited by the UN Security Council.

“Ship-to-ship transfers with North Korea-flagged vessels from Russia or elsewhere of any goods being supplied, sold, or transferred to or from the DPRK are prohibited under the UN Security Council resolutions on North Korea and are sanctionable under U.S. law,” said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. “Consequences for violating these sanctions will remain in place until we have achieved the final, fully verified denuclearization of North Korea.”

“Today OFAC designated Vladivostok, Russia-based shipping companies Primorye Maritime Logistics Co Ltd (Primorye) and Gudzon Shipping Co LLC (Gudzon), the registered ship owners and managers of Russia-flagged merchant vessel (M/V) PATRIOT (IMO 9003550). In early 2018, the PATRIOT conducted two ship-to-ship transfers of oil for the benefit of North Korea, including 1,500 tons of oil to the North Korea-flagged M/V CHONG RIM 2 (IMO 8916293) and 2,000 tons of oil to the North Korea-flagged M/V CHON MA SAN (IMO 8660313).

The ultimate buyer was UN- and U.S.-designated Taesong Bank, a North Korean entity subordinate to the UN- and U.S.-designated Workers’ Party of Korea Office 39, which engages in illicit economic activities for North Korean leadership. The CHONG RIM 2 was listed by the UN and the United States in March 2016. The CHON MA SAN was blocked by the United States in February 2018, and subsequently it was listed by the UN in March 2018 for its involvement in a UN-prohibited ship-to-ship transfer in mid-November 2017.

The following vessels have also been identified by OFAC as property in which Gudzon has an interest:

Russia-flagged vessel NEPTUN (IMO 8404991)
Russia-flagged vessel BELLA (IMO 8808264)
Russia-flagged vessel BOGATYR (IMO 9085730)
Russia-flagged vessel PARTIZAN (IMO 9113020)
Russia-flagged vessel SEVASTOPOL (IMO 9235127)”

The new moves are the latest among a series of the Trump administration’s actions against Russia’s alleged “threatening” activities against the United States.

In response to US escalating actions, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed into law a bill which allows him to respond to sanctions by the United States and other “unfriendly states.”

Under the new law, foreign entities could be prohibited from providing services for Russia’s central and local governments, conducting trade with Russian counterparts, or participating in the privatization of Russian properties.

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