http://havanajournal.com/politics/entry/new-ofac-release-of-civil-penalties-no-cuba-news-is-good-cuba-news/

HavanaJournal.com: Cuba Politics

New OFAC Release of Civil Penalties - No Cuba news is good Cuba news

Posted January 29, 2009 by publisher in Cuba Politics.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

We post all OFAC Civil Penalty notices as they are posted by the US Treasury and this one was just released. I pasted in the text below. If you have been following our OFAC articles, you’ll notice something familiar to these penalty notices that something is missing… Cuba. There is usually one business penalty and at least a couple individual penalties for people who bought Cuban cigars over the internet.

This is the first report since I have been watching these reports that there are NO CIVIL PENALTIES FOR CUBA RELATED VIOLATIONS. Very interesting. I suppose the Bush administration finally decided to focus their efforts on chasing terrorist money after eight years in office.

ENFORCEMENT INFORMATION FOR January 2, 2009

Information concerning the civil penalties process is discussed in OFAC regulations governing the various sanctions programs and in 31 CFR part 501.

On September 8, 2008, OFAC published as Appendix A to part 501 new Economic Sanction Enforcement Guidelines. Although these new guidelines replace earlier enforcement guidelines published by OFAC, for certain matters that were in process at the time the new guidelines were published, the prior guidelines (which can be found at 68 Fed. Reg. 4422 and 71 Fed. Reg. 1971) are still applicable. Please see OFAC’s Revised Interim Policy regarding use of the prior guidelines. The Revised Interim Policy, along with the new guidelines and copies of recent final Penalty Notices, can be found on OFAC’s website at http://www.treas.gov/offices/enforcement/ofac/civpen

ENTITIES – 31 CFR 501.805(d)(1)(i)

Stena Bulk LLC (“Stena Bulk”) Settles Sudanese Sanctions Regulations Allegations: Stena Bulk has remitted $426,486.00 to settle allegations of violations of the Sudanese Sanctions Regulations occurring on or about December 4, 2002, to February 13, 2003, and February 8, 2007, to March 19, 2007. OFAC alleged that Stena Bulk appeared to have facilitated trade-related transactions with Sudan on behalf of foreign entities by providing transportation related services for the transportation of oil to Sudan and the exportation of Sudanese-origin oil without an OFAC license. Stena Bulk voluntarily disclosed the matter to OFAC.

Vonberg Valve, Inc. Settles Allegations of Violations of the Iranian Transactions Regulations: Vonberg Valve, Inc. (“Vonberg”), of Rolling Meadows, IL has remitted $11,049.50 to settle allegations of violations of the Iranian Transactions Regulations. OFAC alleged that Vonberg exported goods to Iran on or about April 29, 2004, without an OFAC license. Vonberg did not voluntarily disclose this matter to OFAC but has instituted improvements to its U.S. sanctions compliance program.

INDIVIDUALS – 31 CFR 501.805(d)(1)(ii)

One Individual Settles Burmese Sanctions Regulations Allegations: The individual has remitted $4,206.00 to settle allegations of violations of the Burmese Sanctions Regulations. On or about August 2006, the individual allegedly exported financial services to Burma by wiring funds in payment for goods, without an OFAC license.

For more information regarding OFAC regulations, please go to: http://www.treas.gov/offices/enforcement/ofac/

Member Comments

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
On January 31, 2009, Patricio wrote:

What does that mean?  That if you buy Cuban cigars, they will not come after you, at least civilly?  If you go to Cuba, same?  I don’t follow this as closely as I would like to.  TIA.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
On January 31, 2009, publisher wrote:

OFAC is in charge of enforcing the US trade and travel restrictions on US citizens. They will levy fines against businesses and individuals that violate trade and travel restrictions, much like a speeding ticket.

Just because there were no civil penalties in this latest report does not mean that they stopped issuing fines to people.

Now that we are in the more Cuba friendly Obama administration, OFAC might be directed to “look the other way” but you should still be aware that it is against US law to buy Cuban cigars or to spend money in Cuba.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
On February 02, 2009, Patricio wrote:

Yeah, ok, cool.  Law is still on the books, etc.  Being from New Orleans originally, which is only 600 miles from Havana across the Gulf, I’d love to visit a city that has some similar architecture, similarities in Jazz music and distinct culture.  However, I don’t want to support the POS Castro and his clowns.  Algun dia, man, algun dia!

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
On February 03, 2009, texasfree wrote:

Patricio,

I encourage you and others to go to Cuba as it is and enjoy the people, the cultura, musica and more.  Please do not allow the government to sway you in your dreams to visit and enjoy it before it gets too commericalized by the investors standing by to put a McDonalds in Havana.

I agree with you in many ways but after what our own country leading clowns have been doing in our own country the past 8 years, is there a difference?  Look what we have done in other countries and how our own country is upside down due to our Bush clowns.  Don’t rush to judgement on the worse of the worse in our world’s leaders. 

I cannot stand the Castro’s period, I am a former Marine and love my USA, but at this time we can compare apples to apples can’t we?

Time to book your travel and enjoy your Constitutional Right to Freely travel anywhere in the world.  It is not ILLEGAL for American Citizens to travel to Cuba, it is only ILLEGAL to spend US currency there. 

Have a family sponsor you there and you are in with no problemo.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
On February 03, 2009, abh wrote:

Oye gracias a dios, lets hope Obama gave these OFAC fines and ridiculous prosecution of innocent civilians a proper burial.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
On February 05, 2011, publisher wrote:

I have not seen any Cuba related civil penalties for many months, maybe even more than a year.

We just finished updating our OFAC Cuba sanctions page with more information about US Cuba trade and travel restrictions.