U.S Department of the Treasury
September 24, 2019
Treasury Further Targets Entities and Vessels Moving Venezuelan Oil to Cuba
Washington – Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated four entities that operate in the oil sector of the Venezuelan economy pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 13850. Additionally, OFAC identified four vessels that transport oil and other petroleum products from Venezuela to Cuba as blocked property owned or controlled by the four designated entities.
“The United States continues to take strong action against the former illegitimate Maduro regime and the malign foreign actors who support it. Maduro’s Cuban benefactors provide a lifeline to the regime and enable its repressive security and intelligence apparatus,” said Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin. “Venezuela’s oil belongs to the Venezuelan people, and should not be used as a bargaining tool to prop up dictators and prolong the usurpation of Venezuelan democracy.”
Since the January 28, 2019 designation of Venezuela’s state-owned oil company Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A. (PdVSA), Cubametales, the Cuban state-run oil import and export company, and other Cuba-based entities have continued to circumvent sanctions by receiving oil shipments from Venezuela. On July 3, 2019, OFAC designated Cubametales for operating in the oil sector of the Venezuelan economy pursuant to E.O. 13850, as amended.
Today’s action further targets Venezuela’s oil sector and the mechanisms used to transport oil to Maduro’s Cuban benefactors, who continue to provide a lifeline to the illegitimate former regime:
- Caroil Transport Marine Ltd. is based in Cyprus, and operates three vessels: Carlota C, Sandino, and Petion.
- Carlota C (IMO 9502453) is a chemical/products tanker that recently delivered Venezuelan petroleum products, including gasoline, to Cuba. In August 2019, PdVSA, Cubametales, and Cuban officials arranged to ship gasoline from El Palito, Venezuela to Cuba. Later in August, Carlota C traveled from Venezuela to the Havana Port Petroleum Refinery in Cuba.
- Sandino (IMO 9441178) is a chemical/products tanker that recently delivered Venezuelan oil products to Cuba.
- Petion (IMO 9295098) is a products tanker that loaded crude oil as part of a shipment involving Cubametales and PDVSA in late May 2019.
- Trocana World Inc. is based in Panama and is the registered owner of Petion.
- Tovase Development Corp is based in Panama and is the registered owner of Sandino.
- Bluelane Overseas SA is based in Panama and is the registered owner of Giralt.
- Giralt (IMO 9259692) is a crude oil tanker that recently delivered Venezuelan oil to Cuba.
As a result of today’s action, all property and interests in property of these entities, and of any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, 50 percent or more by the designated entities, that are in the United States or in the possession or control of U.S. persons are blocked and must be reported to OFAC. OFAC’s regulations generally prohibit all transactions by U.S. persons or within (or transiting) the United States that involve any property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons.
U.S. sanctions need not be permanent; sanctions are intended to bring about a positive change of behavior. The United States has made clear that the removal of sanctions is available for persons designated under E.O. 13692 or E.O. 13850, both as amended, who take concrete and meaningful actions to restore democratic order, refuse to take part in human rights abuses, speak out against abuses committed by the illegitimate former Maduro regime, and combat corruption in Venezuela
In addition to today’s designations and in recognition of a demonstrated change in behavior, OFAC is delisting Serenity Maritime Limited, Lima Shipping Corporation, the vessels Leon Dias and New Hellas, and an aircraft (N133JA).
OFAC designated Serenity Maritime Limited on May 10, 2019, for operating in the oil sector of the Venezuelan economy, pursuant to E.O. 13850, as amended. Additionally, one vessel, the Leon Dias, was identified as blocked property in the interest of Serenity Maritime Limited. Following the company’s designation, Serenity adopted sanctions compliance measures that included the discontinuation of business activities with Cubametales, which chartered the Leon Dias to transport Venezuelan oil to Cuba.
Lima Shipping Corporation was designated by OFAC on April 12, 2019, for operating in the oil sector of the Venezuelan economy, pursuant to E.O. 13850, as amended. Additionally, one vessel, the New Hellas, was identified as blocked property in the interest of Lima Shipping Corporation. Lima Shipping Corporation has subsequently terminated its charter with Cubametales and refused new oil shipments from Venezuela to Cuba.
Finally, OFAC is delisting aircraft N133JA, which was blocked on January 8, 2019, because it was identified as property in which Gustavo Adolfo Perdomo Rosales (Perdomo) had an interest. OFAC designated Perdomo pursuant to E.O. 13850 for being responsible for or complicit in, or having directly or indirectly engaged in, any transaction or series of transactions involving deceptive practices or corruption and the Government of Venezuela or projects or programs administered by the Government of Venezuela, or for being an immediate adult family member of such a person. OFAC has determined that aircraft N133JA is no longer associated with Perdomo.
Treasury recognizes the actions that Serenity Maritime Limited and Lima Shipping Corporation took to ensure that these entities’ respective vessels no longer support the economic interests of the illegitimate former Maduro regime. As a result of today’s action, all property and interests in property that had been blocked as a result of the designation of Serenity Maritime Limited and Lima Shipping Corporation are unblocked, and all otherwise lawful transactions involving U.S. persons and these two entities are no longer prohibited.
For additional information about the methods that Venezuelan senior political figures, their associates, and front persons use to move and hide corrupt proceeds, including how they try to exploit the U.S. financial system and real estate market, please refer to Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) advisories FIN-2019-A002, “Updated Advisory on Widespread Public Corruption in Venezuela”; FIN-2017-A006, “Advisory on Widespread Public Corruption in Venezuela”; FIN-2017-A003, “Advisory to Financial Institutions and Real Estate Firms and Professionals”; and FIN-2018-A003, “Advisory on Human Rights Abuses Enabled by Corrupt Senior Foreign Political Figures and their Financial Facilitators.”