U.S. Charges Florida Family with Sanctions Violations

On September 14, the Justice Department announced several charges against a former University of Miami professor, Mohammad Faghihi, his wife Farzaneh Modarresi and sister Faezeh Faghihi related to their alleged violation of U.S. sanctions on Iran. The family operated a genetic sequencing company that received nearly $3.5 million in suspect wire transfers. Some of the funds were then used to purchase scientific equipment from U.S. manufacturers to ship it to Iran without a license from the Treasury Department. 

U.S. Sentences Iranian for Exporting Military Sensitive Parts

On September 14, the Justice Department sentenced an Iranian national, Mehrdad Ansari, to more than five years in prison for trying to obtain parts that have potential military uses for Iran. “Ansari and his co-conspirators attempted to profit from a far-reaching, extensive scheme to evade U.S. sanctions on Iran. They repeatedly lied to numerous U.S. suppliers and illegally obtained very sensitive dual-use items,” Acting Assistant Attorney General Mark J. Lesko said. The parts Ansari procured would allow Iran to test weapons and communications systems. 

U.S. Settlement with Bank on Sanctions Violations

On August 27, the U.S. Treasury announced that it had reached a settlement agreement with Romanian bank First Bank SA and its American parent company, JC Flowers & Co., for apparent violation of Iran and Syria sanctions. The bank and company agreed to pay $862,318 for processing 98 commercial transactions totaling $3.6 million through U.S. banks on behalf of parties in Iran and Syria. Out of the 98 transactions, 62 were linked to Iran, totaling $2.53 million.