INTERNATIONAL SANCTIONS AUGUST 2020

certificate of

EUROPEAN UNION

CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC

  • On 10 August 2020, Council Implementing Regulation (EU) 2020/1171[1] and Council Implementing Decision (CFSP) 2020/1172[2] were published in the Official Journal of the European Union, which amend Annex I to Regulation (EU) 2014/224[3] and the Annex to Decision (CFSP) 2013/798[4] respectively.

These amendments updated the information concerning six (6) natural persons subject to restrictive measures.

  • On 13 August 2020, Council Implementing Regulation (EU) 2020/1194 and Council Implementing Decision (CFSP) 2020/1195 were published in the Official Journal of the European Union, which amend Annex I to Regulation (EU) 2014/224 and the Annex to Decision (CFSP) 2013/798, respectively.

These amendments add one (1) natural person (Bi Sidi Souleymane) to the list of persons and entities subject to restrictive measures because of their involvement in acts constituting a threat to peace, stability and security in the Central African Republic as leader of the armed group Retour, Réclamation et Réhabilitation (3R).

UNITED STATES

CUBA

  • On 6 August 2020 it was the 60th anniversary of the first expropriations. Specifically, 382 entities were expropriated by the Government of the Republic of Cuba and the first asset expropriated was an oil refinery of Texaco Inc., currently a subsidiary of Chevron Corporation (“Chevron”), valued at 56,196,422.73 dollars (USD).

The Trump Administration did not recognize the 60th anniversary, despite highlighting in 2019 its interest in the 5,913 certified applicants and all those non-certified applicants, which have not been quantified. Nor did it show any recognition by any agency of the US administration that has a political or legal relationship to these events, such as the National Security Council, the State Department, the Treasury Department or Congress.

  • On August 17, 2020, in connection with the lawsuit filed on January 14, 2010 in Florida courts by Marlene Cueto Iglesias and Miriam Iglesias Álvarez against the alcoholic beverages company Pernod Ricard, Public Société Anonyme (“Pernod Ricard”) (case Marlene Cuerto Iglesias and Miriam Iglesias Álvarez, both individuals, vs. Pernod Ricard, Public Société Anonyme), on the basis of the Cuban Liberty and Democratic Solidarity (Libertad) Act of 1996 (“Helms-Burton Act” / “H-B Act“), the defendant’s motion, filed the last 20 of April, seeking the dismissal of that application, has been granted.

The Court recognizes that, as established in the case Javier García-Bengochea vs. Carnival Corporation, a claim to property once owned by a corporation confiscated by the Cuban government is sufficient to survive such a motion. Despite this, the Court partially grants the motion since there is a lack of personal jurisdiction. This procedural defect may be remedied by filing a second amended complaint within fourteen (14) days.

  • On August 27, 2020, in connection with the lawsuit filed by Havana Docks Corporation (“Havana Docks”) against Norwegian Cruise Lines Holdings Ltd (“Norwegian”), the Judge has ordered the continued discovery of evidence, a procedural moment consisting of the exchange of documents and information of the parties to a lawsuit, and the provision of certain information by Norwegian to Havana Docks.

The order was issued following a motion by Havana Docks seeking the annulment of the defendant’s objection to meeting and responding to certain discovery requests on the grounds that the information requested was necessary to challenge the defendant’s defence. Norwegian replied in opposition to the motion arguing that, because the property in question is located in Havana, discovery of evidence should be limited only to travel to that city and not to all of Cuba. 

  • On 31 August 2020 Marriott International has informed that it has been notified by the United States Department of the Treasury (USA) that it must cease the activity of its Four Points Sheraton hotel in Havana, and that it is not allowed to open another hotel that it was completing and which was expected to open in 2020.

This is due to the non-renewal of the biannual license granted by OFAC, which had been granted in the years 2016 and 2018, allowing Marriott International to manage properties in the Republic of Cuba. The reason for this decision is due to the fact that the ultimate owner of both properties is the Cuban Revolutionary Armed Forces.

CHINA

  • On 7 August 2020 the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), pursuant to Executive Order 13936 of July 14, 2020, added eleven (11) individuals to the Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons List (“SDN List”) for undermining Hong Kong’s autonomy and restricting the freedom of expression or assembly of Hong Kong citizens.
  • On 25 August 2020, OFAC, pursuant to the Foreign Narcotics Kingpin Sanctions Regulations (FNKSR), has added one (1) natural person of Chinese nationality and one (1) Chinese entity to the SDN List for trafficking and shipping fentanyl to the United States.

COLOMBIA

  • On 25 August 2020, OFAC, by virtue of the FNKSR, removed from the SDN List three (3) natural persons of Colombian nationality and one (1) Colombian entity that had previously been included because of their links with the companies Promotora Turística Sol Plaza, Canteras Copacabana, Tritcon S.A.S. and Almequip S.A.S., all of which are controlled by members of the Mejía Alzate family.

UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

  • On 19 August 2020 the OFAC added two (2) entities from the United Arab Emirates to the SDN List for providing key parts and logistical services to Mahan Air, an entity that has been singled out by the counterterrorism authorities for supporting the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps in Iran, as well as by authorities combating the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction

HONDURAS

  • On August 25, 2020, OFAC has removed from the SDN List one (1) natural person of Honduran nationality and five (5) associated Honduran entities that were previously included under the Kingpin Act.

This removal is due to the death of Jaime Rosenthal, who was providing money laundering services to international drug traffickers through their entities, as well as material support.

IRAN

  • On 19 August OFAC added one (1) individual of Iranian nationality to the SDN List for being associated with Emirati entities providing key parts and logistics services to Mahan Air.

Mahan Air has been designated by the anti-terrorism authorities for supporting the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps of Iran, as well as by authorities fighting against the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction

LIBYA

  • On 6 August 2020 OFAC, pursuant to Executive Order 13726 of April 19, 2016, added three (3) natural persons, one (1) entity and one (1) vessel to the SDN List, all of them of Libyan nationality, as they constitute a network of smugglers who contribute to instability and exploit resources in Libya.

MEXICO

  • On 25 August 2020 OFAC, by virtue of the FNKSR, removed from the SDN List four (4) natural persons of Mexican nationality and two (2) Mexican entities that had previously been included because of their links to the entity Bona-Habitat, a company that OFAC had identified as part of the empire of Joaquín Guzmán Loera, alias “El Chapo”. 

           PANAMA

  • On 25 August 2020 OFAC, under the FNKSR, has removed from the SDN List three (3) Panamanian entities that were previously included under the Kingpin Act.

This removal is due to the death of Jaime Rosenthal, who provided money laundering services to international drug traffickers through their entities and for providing them with material support.

CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC

  • On 7 August 2020, OFAC, pursuant to Executive Order 13667 of May 12, 2014, added to the SDN List one (1) natural person of Central African nationality (Bi Sidi Souleymane) for leading the militia Retour, Réclamation et Réhabilitation (3R), which has killed, tortured, raped or displaced thousands of people since 2015.

SYRIA

  • On 20 August 2020 OFAC, pursuant to Executive Order 13894 of October 24, 2019, added six (6) natural persons of Syrian nationality for their contribution to the situation in Syria.

SUDAN

  • On 11 August 2020 OFAC has published the Sudan Program and Darfur Sanctions Guidance and one Frequently Asked Question (FAQ), as well as removed eleven (11) FAQs related to Sudan.

These actions are intended to reflect that Sudan has not been a country with comprehensive sanctions since 12 October 2017 and that, therefore, U.S. persons are no longer prohibited from conducting transactions in relation to Sudan or its government.

UGANDA

  • On 17 August 2020, OFAC, pursuant to Executive Order 13818 of December 20, 2017, added four (4) natural persons of Ugandan nationality to the SDN List for their involvement in an adoption scam of which many children born in Uganda were victims.

US PERSONS

  • On 11 August 2020 OFAC announced a $5,000 agreement with one (1) individual from the United States who, at the time of the apparent violations, was a civilian directly employed by the US Army stationed at the US Embassy in Bogotá. This US person has agreed to settle his potential civil liability for 24 apparent violations of the Foreign Narcotics Kingpin Sanctions Regulations (FNKSR), 31 C.F.R. part. 598. Specifically, between approximately October 2015 and August 2016, he would have been involved in at least 24 transactions involving the blocked property interests of a foreign individual who at that time was a drug trafficker on the SDN list, in apparent violation of the FNKSR.
  • As of 25 August 2020, OFAC has removed from the SDN List one (1) US entity that was previously listed under the Kingpin Act.

This removal is due to the death of Jaime Rosenthal, who provided money laundering services to international drug traffickers through their entities and for providing them with material support.

ZIMBABWE

  • On 5 August 2020 OFAC added one (1) natural person of Zimbabwean nationality, Kudakwashe Regimond Tagwirei, and one (1) entity of the same nationality to the SDN List for providing support to the leaders of the Government of Zimbabwe, who were accused of harming their people through corruption.

In addition, OFAC simultaneously lifted sanctions against the recently deceased John Bredenkamp and twenty (20) companies owned by him.

In Madrid, 21 September 2020

Department of International Trade and Sanctions

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[1] Council Implementing Regulation (EU) 2020/1171 of 7 August 2020 implementing Article 17(3) of Regulation (EU) Nº 2014/224 concerning restrictive measures in view of the situation in the Central African Republic.

[2] Council Implementing Decision (CFSP) 2020/1172 of 7 August 2020 implementing Decision 2013/798/CFSP concerning restrictive measures against the Central African Republic.

[3] Council Implementing Regulation (EU) 2020/1194 of 12 August 2020 implementing Article 17(1) of Regulation (EU) Nº 2014/224 concerning restrictive measures in view of the situation in the Central African Republic.

[4] Council Implementing Decision (CFSP) 2020/1195 of 12 August 2020 implementing Decision 2013/798/CFSP concerning restrictive measures against the Central African Republic.

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