OFAC designates over 150 vessels
On December 9, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control announced sanctions pursuant to Executive Order 13818 against two individuals and the networks of entities they control, along with eight other affiliated entities. Additionally, this action identifies 157 People’s Republic of China flagged fishing vessels in which these entities have an interest. According to OFAC, the designations “demonstrates the U.S. government’s ongoing effort to impose tangible and significant consequences on those engaged in serious human rights abuse, including on those vessels engaged in illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing.” OFAC also noted that this is the first time Treasury has designated an entity listed on the NASDAQ stock exchange. As a result of the sanctions, all property and interests in property belonging to the sanctioned persons that are in the U.S. or in the possession or control of U.S. persons are blocked and must be reported to OFAC. Further, “any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, 50 percent or more by one or more blocked persons are also blocked.” U.S. persons are prohibited from engaging in any dealings involving the property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons, unless exempt or authorized by a general or specific OFAC license.