The US government on Friday sanctioned several Hong Kong-based companies and individuals based in China as part of Washington’s ongoing efforts to disrupt alleged terrorist activity related to Iran.
The seven entities include PCA Xiang Gang Limited, Damineh Optic Limited, China 49 Group Co, Taiwan Be Charm Trading Co, Black Drop International Co, Victory Somo Group (HK) Limited, and Yummy Be Charm Trading (HK) Limited, according to a press release on the Treasury Department website.
The designations came as part of a broader action by the department that targeted Lebanon and Kuwait-based financial conduits that fund the Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah as well as financial facilitators and front companies that support the group and Iran.
One of the financial facilitators, Morteza Minaye Hashemi, lives in China and had funnelled money to Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force (IRGC-QF) and Hezbollah, the Treasury Department said.
Two Chinese nationals Yan Su Xuan and Song Jing had helped Hashemi establish bank accounts and served as straw owners for his companies, which were based in Hong Kong and mainland China, according to the Treasury.
The Department said the first five Hong Kong based entities were owned, controlled, directly or indirectly, by Hashemi. Victory Somo Group (HK) Limited, and Yummy Be Charm Trading (HK) Limited were designated because Hashemi maintains significant oversight over the funds and administration of them.
Hashemi, Yan Su Xuan, Song Jing and the seven companies named by the Treasury department join a list of 351 entities still sanctioned under an executive order signed by former president George W Bush shortly after the terrorist attacks against the US on September 11, 2001.
The Treasury Department said international networks have laundered tens of millions of dollars through regional financial systems and conducted currency exchange operations and trades in gold and electronics for the benefit of both IRGC-QF.
Hezbollah, with the support of the IRGC-QF, uses the revenues generated by these networks to fund terrorist activities, as well as to perpetuate instability in Lebanon and throughout the region, the department said.
The sanctions are aimed members of a network of Lebanon- and Kuwait-based financial conduits that fund the militant group. AFP
The US has sanctioned several people it said have ties to the Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah, a post on the Treasury Department website said on Friday.
The Treasury Department said the sanctions are aimed members of a network of Lebanon- and Kuwait-based financial conduits that fund the militant group.
The new sanctions also took aim at an international network of financial facilitators and front companies that reportedly support Hezbollah and Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Quds Force (IRGC).
“Together, these networks have laundered tens of millions of dollars through regional financial systems and conducted currency exchange operations and trades in gold and electronics for the benefit of both Hezbollah and the IRGC,” the US government said.
That revenue is used to “fund terrorist activities as well as to perpetuate instability in Lebanon and throughout the region”.
The Lebanese citizens named in the sanctions include Hasib Muhammad Hadwan, also known as Hajj Zayn, who is reportedly “responsible for raising funds from donors and businessmen outside Lebanon”.
Another Lebanese citizen, Talib Husayn Ali Jarak Ismail, was also named in the sanctions for reportedly co-ordinating the transfer of millions of dollars to Hezbollah from Kuwait through Jamal Husayn Al Shatti – who was also named.
In addition, the IRGC’s and Hezbollah’s financial facilitators, Meghdad Amini and Ali Qasir, were sanctioned for running a “network of nearly 20 individuals and front companies, located in multiple countries and jurisdictions, that facilitates the movement and sale of tens of millions of dollars’ worth of gold, electronics and foreign currency”.
Two men reportedly involved in the Amini-Qasir network, Mostafa Puriya and Hossein Asadollah, sell electronics through the company Hemera Infotech FZCO.
Another person named in the sanctions, Morteza Minaye Hashemi, who operates out of China, is accused of laundering “tens of millions of dollars for the IRGC and Hezbollah through foreign currency conversions and gold sales”.
Source » scmp