Another webinar on Russian sanctions from the UK authorities, in this case a webinar organised by Export Control Joint Unit to hear more about the breadth of UK Sanctions against Russia, will take place on 24 March. For details see Notice to Exporters 2022/07 –
HM Treasury is to host a free webinar on the new Russian sanctions on 17 March on Microsoft Teams. Speakers will include representatives from the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), HM Treasury (HMT), Department for International Trade (DIT), Department for Transport (DfT), Business Enterprise Industry and Skills (BEIS) and other government departments. Register at Eventbrite.
On 14 March, VoA reported that Australia has imposed fresh sanctions on wealthy Russian entrepreneurs because of the Kremlin’s invasion of Ukraine. Roman Abramovich is among more than 30 individuals sanctioned by Australia. They include the chief executive of Russian energy company Gazprom, Alexey Miller, and the head of Bank Rossiya, Dmitri Lebedev.
Greetings from David (pronounced “Dar-Veed”),as still on tour, so the apology/warning for the following continues to apply…
Panama Covid-19 update – 175 new cases reported and 5 new fatalities, with 2,710 active cases – 16 in ICU and 109 in other wards.
13 MARCH 2022
US: New Export Controls Distinguish Between Exports to Russia and Deemed Exports to Russian Nationals
On 9 March, Just Security reported that new sanctions measures make a key distinction between the treatment of exports to Russia and the release of information to Russian nationals in the US. This differentiation between direct exports and “deemed exports” is not always made in US export control provisions, it says. Russian foreign nationals who are employees of companies in the US can continue to access information in the US that is newly controlled for actual export to Russia.
A news release on 12 March advised that North Macedonia, Montenegro, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway had agreed to align their controls in line with those of the EU involving further restrictive measures in response to Belarus’s involvement in Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, as adopted on 2 March.
Also on 12 March, a further news release advised that North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Ukraine had agreed to align themselves with the extension of sanctions against certain persons in connection with the situation in Ukraine.
Guernsey’s finance industry direct exposure to Russia of probably less than £500 million
On 12 March, Guernsey Press reported that the Guernsey Financial Services Commission has revealed that between £9 and £12 billion from the local investment funds sector is understood to be invested in assets in Russia; and that total flows from Russia to Guernsey in the last quarter for which it has the data – Q3 of 2021 – totalled some £75 million., which comprised just 0.12% of the total flows into Guernsey during those 3 months.
INTERPOL: heightened supervision and monitoring measures in relation to Russia have been implemented
On 10 March, a Statement from Interpol said that to prevent any potential misuse of INTERPOL’s channels in relation to the targeting of individuals within or beyond the conflict in Ukraine, heightened supervision and monitoring measures in relation to Russia have now been implemented. Moscow must now send all diffusions to the General Secretariat to be checked for compliance with INTERPOL’s Rules, and only if a diffusion is found compliant will the General Secretariat then disseminate it to member countries.
Successful collaboration between RCMP and the FBI leads to guilty plea and forfeiture of over $34 Million in assets from ransomware
On 10 March, Yahoo Finance reported that, in January, Sebastien Vachon Desjardins was charged with numerous criminal offences in relation to his activity as part of the Netwalker Ransomware Group. An RCMP investigation began in August 2020, when the RCMP received information and a request from the FBI. Numerous computing and storage devices, 719 Bitcoin and $790,000 in Canadian currency were seized as a result of the search of the residence and this is believed to be the largest seizure of cryptocurrency (in value) in Canada to date.
Upcoming AMLRegulations in Estonia to Affect Cryptocurrency Industry
On 12 March, Bitcoin.com reported that a set of new AML rules will stiffen requirements for crypto companies operating under Estonian licence. The update will make the Estonian regulatory regime for platforms operating with digital assets even stricter than upcoming EU rules. The new rules come into effect on 15 March.
Nigeria: No Evidence That Disgraced ‘Super Cop’, Laundered Money, says Justice Minister
On 13 March, Sahara Reporters reported that the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice has recanted his earlier statement that a prima facie case of money laundering had been established against a former Commander of the Police Intelligence Response Team, Abba Kyari. Kyari, a Deputy Commissioner of Police, is wanted in the US for alleged involvement in a $1.1 million scam carried out by a Internet scammer, Ramon Abass, aka Hushpuppi, and was suspended last July.
12 tankers carrying Russian oil and scheduled to arrive at US ports
On 11 March, American Shipper reported that, after oil companies were given a 45-day window by the Biden administration to phase out existing contracts for Russian oil, at least 2 tankers were loaded with Russian oil and departed for US destinations. MarineTraffic identified 12 tankers in total as part of the “flotilla” traveling with Russian oil to the US. It is said that, while these oil contracts were made prior to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, they could have been cancelled; and tanker cargoes can be traded en route, so there is a possibility the Russian oil may not end up in the US. Even after the ships reach the US, there is no guarantee they will be able to discharge the Russian oil, due to possible union action.
An article on Vox from the Centre for European Policy Research says that cryptocurrency exchanges have only done what is legally required of them when sanctioning Russia for its invasion of Ukraine, unlike the mainstream financial institutions whose restrictions on the Russians generally exceeds what is required by law. The article argues that the implications for the future of cryptocurrencies will be considerable.
On 11 March, Flying magazine carried an article asking if the FAA sanctions on aviation really work, citing a recent example of a case in Canada which caused US officials to clarify the extent of the travel ban because it had seemed to include regular Russian citizens. FAA has updated its position to specify that only Russian persons of interest were on the no-fly list. It also discusses where lessors of Russian aircraft trying to repossess their aircraft in light of the conflict and the sanctions.
PARAGUAY AIRCRAFT ETC SEIZURES IN COUNTER-NARCOTICS OPERATION
The Latin American Aviation Historical Society reported on 13 March that in February, Paraguayan authorities conducted a counter-narcotics operation, which seized a number of high-end vehicles, trucks and yachts, 8 Cessna light aircraft and at least 1 Beech Baron 58 twin-engine aircraft.
China’s ZTE headed to court over possible US probation violation
On 13 March, Yahoo Finance reported that lawyers for ZTE Corp have been summoned to US federal court in Texas for a hearing over whether the Chinese telecommunications equipment maker violated probation in connection with an alleged conspiracy to commit visa fraud. ZTE is on probation after pleading guilty in Dallas in 2017 to illegally shipping US technology to Iran and North Korea.