By Philip J. Heijmans (Bloomberg) —
The US Division of State on Thursday issued a $5 million bounty for info on a Singaporean businessman who broke worldwide sanctions by transporting gasoline to North Korea.
Kwek Kee Seng, director of the Singapore-based transport firm Swanseas Port Companies (S) Pte. Ltd., is accused of directing the supply of petroleum merchandise to North Korea and utilizing one in every of his personal oil tankers, the M/T Brave, to conduct illicit ship-to-ship transfers, in line with a assertion.
The bounty comes because the US ratchets up strain on anybody seen supporting the event of North Korea’s weapons packages. The US has additionally condemned what it mentioned was the test-launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile by North Korea on Thursday, as Pyongyang continued a barrage of weapons checks to protest allied army drills.
Kwek was amongst people and entities sanctioned final month for actions associated to the exportation of petroleum to the regime.
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“Kwek and his co-conspirators sought to obscure their identities and actions by conducting monetary transactions by a sequence of shell corporations,” the US State Division mentioned. It added that funds have been routed by companies based mostly in Panama and Singapore, and thru US banks to pay for the operations.
“These transactions violated the prohibition of the export of monetary providers for the good thing about the DPRK,” the division mentioned. He stays at massive, although the US authorities mentioned his recognized locales embrace North Korea, Thailand, Taiwan, Cameroon and Cambodia.
A federal arrest warrant was issued for Kwek within the US final 12 months after he was charged with conspiracy to violate the Worldwide Emergency Financial Powers Act and conspiracy to commit worldwide cash laundering.
The bounty was issued Thursday by the State Division’s Rewards for Justice program.
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