US indicts Indonesian for breaking Iran sanctions

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WASHINGTON (AFP) – The United States Justice Department charged an Indonesian on Tuesday (Dec 17) with violating sanctions on Iran in supplying millions of dollars worth of new and refurbished aircraft parts to Iran’s blacklisted Mahan Air.

Sunakro Kuntjoro, the president-director of PT MS Aero Support, exported US-made aircraft parts to Mahan Air, in violation of sanctions between 2011 and 2018, according to an indictment filed in federal court in Washington.

Kuntjoro also shipped aircraft parts to the US for repair and then reshipped them to Iran, it said.

The indictment charged eight counts of sanctions-breaking, money laundering, and false statements against Kuntjoro, PT MS Aero Support, and two other related Indonesian companies for violating US export laws.

Kuntjoro billed Mahan millions of dollars for getting the parts refurbished in the US, and hid Iran’s involvement by shipping the parts through Singapore, Hong Kong and Thailand.

US sanctions and a trade embargo ban the supply of US products to Iran without specific permission from the US Treasury, which administers sanctions.

The Treasury slapped sanctions on Mahan Air in 2011 over its ties to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.

The company, one of Iran’s leading airlines, operates several Boeing and other US-made aircraft and has reportedly struggled to keep them flying for lack of parts.