Dutch Company Agrees to Pay $10.5 Million Civil Penalty to Settle Commerce Department Charges Involving Illegal Exports and Reexports to Iran and Sudan
The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), Office of Export Enforcement (OEE), recently announced that Fokker Services B.V. (“Fokker Services”), a Netherlands-based aerospace services provider, has agreed to a $10.5 million civil settlement agreement in connection with the illegal export and re-export of aircraft parts, technology, and services to Iran and Sudan, both of which are subject to U.S. sanctions, including BIS licensing requirements. The settlement was reached as part of a global settlement involving the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).
“The scope of today’s global settlement with Fokker Services highlights the egregious nature of the violations and points to the commitment of OEE to pursue and prosecute those responsible no matter where they are located,” said Under Secretary of Commerce Eric L. Hirschhorn. “OEE and our partner law enforcement colleagues will continue to use all means available to ensure that U.S. technology does not fall into the wrong hands.”
The $10.5 million settlement with BIS also in part resolves the OFAC allegations. Under a deferred prosecution agreement entered into with the Department of Justice, the company is forfeiting an additional $10.5 million.
BIS has charged Fokker Services with 253 separate violations of the Export Administration Regulations (EAR), including for the export or reexport of items controlled for national security, missile technology and antiterrorism purposes. The charges include transactions involving Iranian military end users and violations of the terms of a temporary denial order in force at the time against Iran Air. The charges result from an investigation by OEE, along with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Defense Criminal Investigative Service, and Homeland Security Investigations, that uncovered numerous violations that occurred between 2005 and 2010. The investigation found that Fokker Services systematically engaged in activity to avoid detection by U.S. investigators by taking steps to conceal the ultimate destination of the transactions.
Fokker Services is based in the Netherlands and is a subsidiary of Fokker Technologies Holding B.V., a manufacturing and technical services company also based in the Netherlands. Fokker Services had three subsidiaries: Fokker Aircraft Services, B.V., based in the Netherlands; Fokker Services Asia Pte. Ltd., based in Singapore; and Fokker Services, Inc., based in Atlanta, Georgia. Since 2010, Fokker Services has ceased all business with sanctioned countries and has implemented a new compliance program. Under the settlement, Fokker Services accepts and acknowledges responsibility for its conduct and that of its employees. The settlement is subject to final review and approval by the Assistant Secretary for Export Enforcement.
BIS controls exports and reexports of commodities, technology, and software for reasons of national security, missile technology, nuclear non-proliferation, chemical and biological weapons non-proliferation, crime control, regional stability, foreign policy and anti-terrorism. Criminal penalties and administrative sanctions can be imposed for violations of the Export Administration Regulations. For more information, please visit www.bis.doc.gov.