Taiwan-based DES International Co. and Brunei-based Soltech Industry Co. each agreed to pay fines of $83,769 after pleading guilty to Department of Justice (DOJ) charges of conspiring to violate U.S. export laws and sanctions by sending U.S.-origin goods to Iran.
The two business organizations were affiliated with each other through common directors, employees, and customers, the DOJ said in a press release Tuesday.
The companies procured goods from the United States for the benefit of Iranian government entities and business organizations, the DOJ said, with a sales agent for both DES and Soltech helping an Iranian research center obtain U.S. goods without a license from the U.S. Treasury Department.
These goods included a power amplifier designed for use in electromechanical devices and cybersecurity software.
To conceal the U.S. origin of the goods, the sales agent removed serial number stickers with the phrase “Made in USA” from packages and had the cybersecurity software downloaded onto a computer outside of Iran, the DOJ said.
The sales agent shared developments regarding the misconduct with other employees and directors of DES and Soltech, the DOJ said. An arrest warrant issued for the sales agent has not yet been executed, the agency added.
DES and Soltech pleaded guilty to conspiring to defraud the United States and violate the International Emergency Economic Powers Act and sanctions against Iran. The penalties assessed against the companies were three times the value of the goods unlawfully exported, the DOJ said. DES and Soltech will each serve a five-year term of corporate probation.
DES and Soltech were each designated by the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control in 2020 for providing or attempting to provide support, goods, or services to companies illicitly procuring electronic components for Iran.