The U.S. Wednesday sanctioned 20 companies and individuals allegedly involved in funding groups like Hamas and Hezbollah through large Iranian military financial networks. File Photo by Roger L. Wollenberg/UPI | License Photo
Nov. 29 (UPI) -- The U.S. Treasury Department on Wednesday sanctioned companies and individuals linked to large Iranian military financial networks for allegedly funding groups like Hamas and Hezbollah.
Twenty individuals and entities were sanctioned for being involved in financial facilitation networks benefitting Iran's Ministry of Defense and Armed Forces Logistics, Iranian Armed Forces General Staff, and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force.
"The IRGC-QF and MODAFL continue to engage in illicit finance schemes to generate funds to fan conflict and spread terror throughout the region," said Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson in a statement. "The United States remains committed to exposing elements of the Iranian military and its complicit partners abroad to disrupt this critical source of funds."
The Treasury Department said the sanctioned people and entities are helping finance "destabilizing regional activities."
A number of front companies as well as companies outside of Iran are being used to enable Iranian military revenue through crude oil and other commodities, according to the Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control.
Sanctioned companies include Sepehr Energy and Pishro Tejarat in Iran.
Sanctioned individuals include Majid A'zami, described as Sepehr Energy's deputy chairman, principal board member, and managing director. Elyas Niroomand Toomaj, a Sepehr Energy employee, was also sanctioned.
Treasury also sanctioned Seyyed Abdoljavad Alavi, chairman of the board of Pishro Tejarat.
Treasury said foreign-owned companies enabling Iranian military revenue include Hong Kong-based Puyuan Trade Co., Limited and HK Sihang Haochen Trading Limited.
Sepehr Energy last year struck a deal to sell millions of barrels of Iranian light crude oil to Dubai-based Unique Performance General Trading LLC and OPG Global General Trading Co. LLC.
JEP Petrochemical Trading LLC, also based in Dubai, paid Dubai-based Future Energy Trading LLC the equivalent of more than $400 million for Iranian oil from Sepehr Energy according to the Treasury Department.
Treasury said the Iranian government uses billions of dollars worth of commodities, including oil, to finance its various military entities.