By Maya Lester QC & Michael O’Kane

BIS & DOJ enforcement action against Emtrasur aircraft

On Tuesday (2 August 2022), Venezuela-based cargo airline Empresa de Transporte Aéreocargo del Sur, S.A. (Emtrasur) was issued with a Temporary Denial Order (TDO) denying its export privileges for 180 days over alleged breaches of US export controls and a TDO against Iranian airline Mahan Air. It is alleged that in October 2021, Mahan Air transferred custody and control of a US-origin Boeing 747 aircraft to Emtrasur’s parent company, Conviasa, without authorisation. The plane has since been painted in Emtrasur’s livery and logo and operated on flights into and out of Venezuela, Iran and Russia since 24 February 2022, again without the required BIS authorisation. Press Release.

Mahan Air was designated by OFAC in 2011 for providing material support to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corp-Qods Force (IRGC-QF), while Conviasa was designated in 2020. Press Release & previous post.

The Department of Justice has transmitted a request to seize the aircraft (currently grounded in Argentina) following the unsealing of a seizure warrant in the US District Court for the District of Columbia. Press Release.

IranIran RussiaRussia VenezuelaVenezuela United StatesUnited States

About Maya Lester QC

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Maya Lester QC is a senior barrister (Queen’s Counsel) at Brick Court Chambers with a wide-ranging practice in public law, European law, competition law, international law, human...

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