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Category Archives: Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls

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Immigration and Worksite Enforcement, Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls

The Export/Immigration Dilemma: Don’t Let OSC Catch Your HR Department Unawares

On March 31, 2016, the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC) issued a carefully worded technical assistance letter addressing the complex interplay between U.S. immigration and export control laws in the context of hiring and applicant screening. Although it provides limited new guidance, OSC’s letter is a… Continue Reading
Compliance, Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls

Iran Sanctions and the Implementation of the JCPOA: Lots of Changes, but Little Impact on U.S. Businesses?

In recent days, the news has been full of stories referring to the “end” or “lifting” of U.S. sanctions against Iran, actions that were taken after the International Atomic Energy Agency confirmed on January 16, 2016, that Iran has met its obligations under the July 14, 2015, Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in connection… Continue Reading
Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls

Sanctions Against Iran: EU Adopts Three Legal Acts to Prepare for the Lifting of all Nuclear-related Sanctions

On 18 October 2015, the Council of the EU adopted three legal acts for the lifting of all the nuclear-related economic and financial EU sanctions against Iran. First, Council Decision (CFSP) 2015/1863 amends Council Decision 2010/413/CFSP concerning restrictive measures against Iran. It provides for the termination of all Union nuclear-related economic and financial restrictive measures.… Continue Reading
Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls

White House Hostage Policy Leaves Risk on Table for Third Parties

Last month, the White House announced a change in its policy toward overseas hostage-takings of U.S. citizens. The new policy, accompanied by an Executive Order, aims to effect policy changes at home and overseas, including a focus on increased and continuous collaboration with a hostage victim’s family. The new policy also reaffirms the government’s longstanding… Continue Reading
Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls

Still Certain about Uncertainty − Waiting on the Details in the New Iran Nuclear Deal

On July 14, the White House and the U.S. State Department announced that they had reached an agreement with their diplomatic partners and Iran to curtail Iran’s further development of its nuclear program. In exchange for assurances that should limit Iran’s ability to develop a nuclear weapon, the U.S. and its negotiating partners − the… Continue Reading
Compliance, Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls

Latest US Sanctions Against Russia Target Financial Services and Energy Sector

On Wednesday, July 16, 2014, the United States announced additional sanctions against Russian interests in response to the continuing crisis in Ukraine. Starting in March of this year, the United States began imposing sanctions against Russian organizations and individuals, including a number of individuals associated with President Vladimir Putin’s inner circle. This latest round of… Continue Reading
Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls, Uncategorized

Violations of the ITAR, EAR or OFAC Regulations: Mistake or Willful Act?

The laws regarding what can be exported from the U.S. and where those exports can go are complex. Not surprisingly, these laws are violated on occasion. When violations occur, the critical question for enforcement agencies is whether the violations were willful. The answer to that question generally determines whether the violation is treated as a… Continue Reading
Election and Political Law, Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls

The Bedeviling Question of Willfulness in the Criminal Context

Courts have long struggled with interpreting (and thus instructing a jury on) the statutory element of willfulness. This frequently manifests in the challenge of expressing what level of knowledge the defendant must possess about the law he is accused of violating. Reflective of this challenge, courts have characterized the element of willfulness as “bedeviling,” turning… Continue Reading
Compliance, Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls

As Companies Wind Down in Iran, the President Must Roll Up his Investigative Sleeves

As we know, the recently enacted Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act of 2012 (ITRSHRA) expands the reach of the U.S. sanctions program and imposes new SEC disclosure requirements on issuers if they or their affiliates do business with Iran (although, their affiliates may not have violated U.S. law in any way, because… Continue Reading
Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls

The Continued Push for the National Export Initiative and Export Control Reform

Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke continued the administration’s push to boost U.S. exports 100% by 2015 in accordance with President Obama’s 3/11/10 executive order establishing the National Export Initiative (“NEI”).  Last week, Secretary Locke addressed the 2010 International District Export Council (“DEC”) at a conference in Detroit, noting recent economic successes as a result of the NEI… Continue Reading
Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls

Implementation of New Iran Sanctions Act Begins

In recent years, the U.S. government has vigorously pursued financial institutions that knowingly violated sanctions targeting rogue regimes.  Since January 2009, the Department of Justice and the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Controls (“OFAC”) have brought a series of actions against European banks for violating U.S. financial sanctions.  Four banks have paid criminal penalties totaling… Continue Reading
Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls

KSM Trial in Political Limbo?

It’s been more than several weeks since the Administration indicated that a decision on whether Khalid Sheikh Mohammed will be tried in a federal court or military commission was weeks away. Of course, this will be the second decision on the issue – Attorney General Eric Holder first announced that KSM and his 9/11 co-conspirators would… Continue Reading