On 26th February, HM Treasury issued a news release advising that the details relating to the Daedong Credit Bank, included in the list of those entities subject to sanctions, had been amended. The details concerned were merely the SWIFT code for the bank.
On 26th February, the UK Department for International Trade published Notice to Exporters 2018/03. This notes that export controls on ‘information security’ products, notably those using cryptography, are contained in Category 5 Part 2 ‘Information Security’ of the UK’s consolidated list of strategic export controls. Detail changes have been made to the export control criteria for such products, which are detailed in the Notice.
On 26th February, the Home Office published new guidance containing information for competent authorities in EU Member States (excluding Denmark and Ireland) and in the UK about obtaining evidence within the UK or abroad to assist in criminal investigations or proceedings. The EIO replaces existing measures for requesting and sharing evidence for criminal investigations through Mutual Legal Assistance (MLA) between EU Member States.
Note that Gibraltar is the only British Overseas Territories which operates the EIO, but the EIO does not apply for assistance between Gibraltar and the UK.
On 26th February, the Home Office published an updated version of its guidance to foreign authorities on how to submit mutual legal assistance requests to the UK.
On 26th February, OCCRP published a story saying that the Estonian branch of Danske Bank, Denmark’s biggest bank, closed the accounts of several companies in 2013 after realising they had been used by a member of Vladimir Putin’s family and Russia’s intelligence service, FSB, to launder huge amounts of money, according to a leaked report. It also says that Danske Bank Estonia is already implicated in other money laundering schemes, involving billions of dollars from Azerbaijan, some of which ended up in the pockets of European politicians who praised the regime. The “Russian Laundromat” also revealed that $20–80 billion was moved out of Russia through a network of global banks, including Danske. A UK LLP, Lantana Trade LLP, is said to have falsely reported to the UK Companies House in 2013 that it had a low turnover and was dormant. In fact, huge amounts of money passed through the accounts daily.
EU ADDS 1 NAME TO AL-QAIDA/ISIL SANCTIONS LIST
On 26th February, EU Regulation 2018/281/EU added Fabien CLAIN (a.k.a. Omar) to its sanctions lists.
EU AMENDS ITS SYRIAN SANCTIONS LISTS
On 26th February, EU Regulation 2018/282/EU added 2 new names to the Syrian sanctions lists, these being 2 ministers in the Assad government, and amended 5 existing entries.
See also news release –
HM TREASURY ALSO NOTIFIED AMENDMENT OF ITS AL-QAIDA/ISIL SANCTIONS LIST
On 26th February, a news release from HM Treasury notified that the above change had also been made to published UK sanctions lists.
On 26th February, OFAC advised a number of new additions to its Specially Designated Nationals (SDN) list in connection with Libya. The 6 new individuals include 4 nationals of Malta and 1 Egyptian. It also added 24 entities, all but 2 from or linked to Malta (the other 2 are from Italy and Libya). It also listed 7 vessels – with the names: Bonu 5, Marie de Lourdes, Marie de Lourdes I, Marie de Lourdes V, Progres, Theodoros and Zeus.
The Malta Independent reported on the listings –
Darren Debono and other Maltese persons have been listed by the US Treasury in a new round of sanctions targeting oil smugglers in Libya for reasons linked to the illicit production, refining, brokering, sale, purchase, or export of Libyan oil or for being owned or controlled by designated persons.
US TREASURY SANCTIONS INTERNATIONAL NETWORK SMUGGLING OIL FROM LIBYA TO EUROPE
The US Treasury also published a news release explaining the background to the new listings. The people and companies are said to have been involved in the illicit production, refining, brokering, sale, purchase, or export of Libyan oil.
On 25th February, Associated Press reported that Argentina’s coast guard said it fired on a Chinese boat illegally fishing in its waters before embarking on an almost 8-hour chase to capture it. Nobody was reportedly injured and no fishermen were detained. The Argentine Naval Prefecture said in a statement that its officers fired shots at the Jing Yuan 626 after the vessel was caught illegally fishing in the country’s exclusive economic zone. The incident was said to have followed 4 other vessels also flying under a Chinese flag that attempted to ram into coast guard vessels.
On 26th February, Sandler Travis & Rosenberg reported that the US Bureau of Industry and Security has imposed a $28,600 penalty against a US company, Mitsui Plastics Inc, to resolve charges that it committed 9 violations of the anti-boycott provisions of the Export Administration Regulations in connection with transactions involving the sale and/or transfer of goods or services to Bahrain. Under the anti-boycott provisions of the EAR, companies are prohibited from refusing to do business with or in Israel or with companies because of another company’s blacklisting or boycott (or aiding and abetting such a boycott). BIS alleged that, with the intent to comply with, further, or support an unsanctioned foreign boycott, the company furnished information concerning another person’s business relationships with another person known or believed to be restricted from having any business relationship with or in a boycotting country; and that it failed to report its receipt of requests to engage in a restrictive trade practice or boycott.
These UK Regulations, SI 2018/229, bring into force a code of practice w.e.f. 21st February, and issued under section 94(1) of the Policing and Crime Act 2017 re enforcement powers in relation to ships that are available to an English or Welsh law enforcement officer, who may arrest without warrant any person whom the officer has reasonable grounds to believe to be guilty of an offence under the law of England and Wales that has been, or is being, committed on a relevant ship. The 2017 Act introduced new maritime specific powers for law enforcement officers across the UK, including the power to stop, board, detain and divert vessels in respect of any offence under the law of their jurisdiction. The changes were made because section 30 of the Police Act 1996 Act provided that the powers of a constable in England and Wales were limited to England and Wales and the adjacent UK waters. The new maritime enforcement powers are brought into force by the Regulations below, from 1st March.
POLICING AND CRIME ACT 2017 (COMMENCEMENT NO. 7) REGULATIONS 2018
These Regulations, SI 2018/227, bring into force certain further provisions of the 2017 Act relating to the London Fire Commissioner, maritime enforcement powers applicable in England and Wales, and Scotland, cross-border enforcement powers in the UK, and removal of certain political restrictions placed on the position of Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime. The provisions come into force on various dates from 1st March to 1st April. An addendum lists the previous commencement regulations that brought into force other elements of the 2017 Act.