Skip to main content
Menu Icon Menu Icon
Close

InfoBytes Blog

Financial Services Law Insights and Observations

Filter

Subscribe to our InfoBytes Blog weekly newsletter and other publications for news affecting the financial services industry.

  • OFAC sanctions Mexico-based human smuggling organization

    Financial Crimes

    The U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) recently announced sanctions pursuant to Executive Order 13581 against a human smuggling organization, and several individuals and entities in its support network. OFAC claimed the Mexico-based organization, Hernandez Salas transnational criminal organization (TCO), earns billions of dollars per year smuggling and creating false documentation for migrants. The leader of the TCO has been sanctioned, among four other supporters. OFAC reported that the individuals are currently incarcerated in Mexico and awaiting extradition to the U.S. for trial before a federal grand jury. Also sanctioned are two Mexican hotels that have taken part in the TCO’s smuggling operations. OFAC noted that the sanctions were pursued in close collaboration with Mexico’s Financial Intelligence Unit.

    As a result of the sanctions, all property and interests in property belonging to the sanctioned persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked and must be reported to OFAC. Additionally, “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 also generally prohibited from engaging in any dealings involving the property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons.

    Financial Crimes Of Interest to Non-US Persons OFAC OFAC Designations OFAC Sanctions Department of Treasury SDN List Mexico

  • OFAC sanctions entities connected to Mexican cartel

    Financial Crimes

    On June 6, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced sanctions, pursuant to Executive Order 14059, against three individuals and one entity connected to the Cartel de Jalisco Nueva Generación (CJNG). The CJNG is a Mexico-based organization responsible for a significant proportion of fentanyl and other drugs trafficked into the U.S. OFAC explained that two individuals are senior members of CJNG who engaged in trafficking firearms into the U.S. and fuel theft in Mexico. These sanctions follow similar actions taken earlier this year against other Mexican arms dealers working in collaboration with the CJNG (covered by InfoBytes here). Additionally, one individual and her currency exchange house (responsible for laundering over $6 million between 2020 and 2022) have been identified for laundering money on behalf of the CJNG, OFAC stated.

    As a result of the sanctions, all property and interests in property of the designated persons located in the U.S. or held by U.S. persons are blocked and must be reported to OFAC. Further, “any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, individually or in the aggregate, 50 percent or more by one or more blocked persons are also blocked.” U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in any dealings involving the property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons unless authorized by an OFAC-issued general or specific license, or an exemption. OFAC further warned that “U.S. persons may face civil or criminal penalties for violations of E.O. 14059 and the Kingpin Act.”

    Financial Crimes OFAC OFAC Designations OFAC Sanctions Department of Treasury SDN List Mexico

  • OFAC sanctions entities in China and Mexico tied to illicit drugs

    Financial Crimes

    On May 30, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced sanctions, pursuant to Executive Order 14059, against 17 individuals and entities for their involvement in the rapid increase of equipment used to make illicit drugs. OFAC detailed the impact of the drugs the equipment produces and explained that the counterfeit pills are often laced with fentanyl and ultimately end up in U.S. markets. Targeting every stage of the pill production process, OFAC designated seven entities and six individuals based in China and three individuals based in Mexico for perpetuating the trafficking of illicit drugs through the sale, manufacturing, and/or shipment of pill press equipment.

    As a result of these sanctions, all property and interests in property belonging to the sanctioned persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked and must be reported to OFAC. Additionally, “any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, individually or in the aggregate, 50 percent or more by one or more blocked persons are also blocked.” U.S. persons are also generally prohibited from engaging in any dealings involving the property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons unless authorized by a general or specific license or exempt. Further, financial institutions and persons that engage in certain transactions with the designated persons may themselves be exposed to sanctions or subject to enforcement.

    Financial Crimes OFAC OFAC Designations OFAC Sanctions SDN List China Mexico Of Interest to Non-US Persons Department of Treasury

  • OFAC announces drug cartel sanctions

    Financial Crimes

    On May 9, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced sanctions, pursuant to Executive Order 14059, against four individuals involved in the fentanyl trade, along with two related Mexico-based entities. According to OFAC, the sanctioned persons are part of a Sinaloa Cartel network responsible for trafficking a significant portion of fentanyl and other drugs into the United States. OFAC coordinated with the Mexican government, the FBI, the DEA, and Homeland Security to take this action. As a result of the sanctions, all property and interests in property belonging to the sanctioned individuals and entities subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked and must be reported to OFAC. U.S. persons are also generally prohibited from engaging in any dealings involving the property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons. Additionally, OFAC warned that “persons that engage in certain transactions with the individuals and entities designated today may themselves be exposed to sanctions or subject to an enforcement action.” 

    Financial Crimes Of Interest to Non-US Persons OFAC Department of Treasury OFAC Sanctions OFAC Designations SDN List Mexico

  • OFAC adds more sanctions linked to timeshare fraud

    Financial Crimes

    On April 27, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced sanctions, pursuant to Executive Order 14059, against seven individuals and 19 Mexican companies connected to timeshare fraud on behalf of the Cartel de Jalisco Nueva Generacion (CJNG). The CJNG—a Mexico-based organization responsible for trafficking a significant proportion of illicit fentanyl and other drugs that enter the U.S.—is also designated under E.O. 14059. OFAC explained that timeshare fraud often targets older U.S. citizens to scam victims of their life savings and is an important revenue stream for the group’s criminal enterprise. The designations build on sanctions imposed on several other companies in April (covered by InfoBytes here) and continue OFAC’s efforts to disrupt CJNG’s timeshare fraud network.

    As a result of the sanctions, all property and interests in property of the designated persons located in the U.S. or held by U.S. persons are blocked and must be reported to OFAC. Further, “any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, individually or in the aggregate, 50 percent or more by one or more blocked persons are also blocked.” U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in any dealings involving the property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons unless authorized by an OFAC-issued general or specific license, or exempt. OFAC further warned that “U.S. persons may face civil or criminal penalties for violations of E.O. 14059 and the Kingpin Act.”

    Financial Crimes Of Interest to Non-US Persons OFAC Department of Treasury OFAC Sanctions OFAC Designations SDN List Mexico

  • OFAC sanctions chemical suppliers tied to Mexican drug cartel

    Financial Crimes

    On April 14, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced sanctions, pursuant to Executive Order 14059, against two Chinese entities and five individuals based in China and Guatemala for their roles in supplying precursor chemicals to Mexican drug cartels for the production of illicit fentanyl intended for U.S. markets. OFAC coordinated with the DEA and the DOJ to take this action. “Treasury, as part of the whole-of-government effort to respond to [the fentanyl] crisis, will continue to vigorously apply our tools to prevent the transfer of precursor chemicals and machinery necessary to produce this drug,” Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson said in the announcement. The sanctions block all property and interests in property subject to U.S. jurisdiction belonging to the sanctioned persons and require such property, as well as “any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, 50 percent or more by one or more blocked persons,” to be reported to OFAC. U.S. persons are also generally prohibited from engaging in any dealings involving the property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons. OFAC warned that “persons that engage in certain transactions with the individuals and entities designated today may themselves be exposed to sanctions or subject to an enforcement action.” 

    Financial Crimes Of Interest to Non-US Persons OFAC Department of Treasury OFAC Sanctions OFAC Designations SDN List China Guatemala Mexico Drug Enforcement Administration DOJ

  • OFAC sanctions timeshare fraud network

    Financial Crimes

    On March 2, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced sanctions, pursuant to Executive Order 14059, against eight Mexican companies connected to timeshare fraud on behalf of the Cartel de Jalisco Nueva Generacion (CJNG). The CJNG is also designated under E.O. 14059. OFAC described timeshare fraud typology, explaining that schemes often involve third-party scammers who claim to have ready buyers and make unsolicited purchase offers to timeshare owners. If these offers are accepted, the scammers ask timeshare owners to pay advance fees and taxes to “facilitate or expedite the sale with assurances of reimbursement upon closing.” However, timeshare owners, after making multiple payments, eventually realize that the offers do not exist and lose their money, OFAC said. In conjunction with the sanctions, OFAC issued an alert warning that perpetrators of timeshare fraud may falsely claim to represent OFAC to appear legitimate and further their fraud.

    As a result of the sanctions, all property and interests in property of the designated persons located in the U.S. or held by U.S. persons is blocked and must be reported to OFAC. Further, “any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, individually or in the aggregate, 50 percent or more by one or more blocked persons are also blocked.” U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in any dealings involving the property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons unless authorized by an OFAC-issued general or specific license, or exempt. OFAC further warned that “U.S. persons may face civil or criminal penalties for violations of E.O. 14059 and the Kingpin Act.”   

    Financial Crimes Of Interest to Non-US Persons Department of Treasury OFAC OFAC Sanctions OFAC Designations Mexico SDN List

  • OFAC sanctions Mexican arms trafficker for supplying weapons to cartel

    Financial Crimes

    On February 28, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced sanctions pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 14059 against a Mexican national for his role in providing, or having attempted to provide, financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services in support of, the Cartel de Jalisco Nueva Generacion (CJNG). The CJNG is also designated under E.O. 14059. According to OFAC, the sanctions are part of a whole-of-government effort to combat global threats posed by illicit drug trafficking into the U.S. The agency stressed it will continue to coordinate with federal government partners and foreign counterparts to target and pursue accountability for foreign illicit drug actors. As a result of the sanctions, the designated individual’s property located in the U.S. or held by U.S. persons is blocked and must be reported to OFAC. Further, “any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, individually or in the aggregate, 50 percent or more by one or more blocked persons are also blocked.” U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in any dealings involving the property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons unless authorized by an OFAC-issued general or specific license, or exempt. OFAC further warned that “U.S. persons may face civil or criminal penalties for violations of E.O. 14059 and the Kingpin Act.”     

    Financial Crimes Of Interest to Non-US Persons Department of Treasury OFAC OFAC Sanctions OFAC Designations Mexico SDN List

  • OFAC announces sanctions tied to Mexican drug cartel

    Financial Crimes

    On February 22, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced sanctions, pursuant to Executive Order 14059, against six Mexican nationals involved in the methamphetamine and fentanyl trade, along with six related Mexico-based entities. According to OFAC, the sanctioned network’s actions aid a Mexican drug cartel’s facilitation of fentanyl and other drugs trafficked into the United States. OFAC coordinated with the Mexican government, the FBI, and the DEA to take this action. As a result of the sanctions, all property and interests in property belonging to the sanctioned persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked and must be reported to OFAC. U.S. persons are also generally prohibited from engaging in any dealings involving the property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons, and “may face civil or criminal penalties for violations of E.O. 14059.” Additionally, OFAC warned that “persons that engage in certain transactions with the individuals and entities designated today may themselves be exposed to sanctions or subject to an enforcement action.” 

    Financial Crimes Of Interest to Non-US Persons OFAC OFAC Designations OFAC Sanctions SDN List Mexico Department of Treasury

  • OFAC issues sanctions to counter narcotics trafficking

    Financial Crimes

    On January 30, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced sanctions pursuant to Executive Order 14059 against the leader of a Mexico-based network and two associates for procuring precursor chemicals to manufacture and traffic illicit narcotics to the United States. As a result of the sanctions, all property and interests in property belonging to the sanctioned persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked and must be reported to OFAC. Additionally, “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 also generally prohibited from engaging in any dealings involving the property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons.

    Financial Crimes Of Interest to Non-US Persons Department of Treasury OFAC OFAC Sanctions OFAC Designations Mexico SDN List

Pages

Upcoming Events