Hizballah / Hezbollah

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
  August 9, 2019
  Contact: DEA Public Affairs
 

Press Release

 

Lebanese businessman tied by Treasury Department to Hezbollah is sentenced to prison for money laundering scheme involving the evasion of U.S. sanctions

 

WASHINGTON – The operator of a network of businesses in Lebanon and Africa, whom the United States Department of the Treasury designated as a financier of Lebanon-based terrorist group Hezbollah, was sentenced to five years in prison and ordered to forfeit $50 million by U.S. District Judge Reggie B. Walton of the District of Columbia.

 

Kassim Tajideen, 63, had previously pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to launder monetary instruments in furtherance of violating the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA). In 2009, the U.S. Department of the Treasury designated Tajideen as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist based on his tens of millions of dollars of financial support of Hezbollah. The designation prohibited Tajideen from being involved in, or benefiting from, transactions involving U.S. persons or companies without a license from the Department of the Treasury.

 

“This defendant knowingly violated sanctions and put our nation’s security at risk,” said Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski of the Criminal Division.  “His sentencing and the $50 million forfeiture in this case are just the latest public examples of the Department of Justice’s ongoing efforts to disrupt and dismantle Hezbollah and its support networks.”

 

Tajideen’s case falls under the United States Drug Enforcement Administration’s Project Cassandra, which targets Hezbollah’s global criminal support network, which operates as a logistics, procurement and financing arm for Hezbollah. This investigation and others are part of the Department of Justice’s Hezbollah Financing and Narcoterrorism Team. The HFNT was formed in January 2018 to ensure an aggressive and coordinated approach to prosecutions and investigations, including Project Cassandra cases, targeting the individuals and networks supporting Hezbollah. Comprised of experienced international narcotics trafficking, terrorism, organized crime, and money laundering prosecutors and investigators, the HFNT works closely with partners like the DEA, the Department of the Treasury, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, among others, to advance and facilitate prosecutions of Hezbollah and its support network in appropriate cases.

 

“This is the latest example of the DEA’s success against Hezbollah’s global criminal support network and our commitment to interagency collaboration in combatting the overall threat posed by this transnational criminal organization,” said Acting Special Agent in Charge of DEA’s Special Operations Division Michael J. Machak.

 

“Today’s sentencing highlights our efforts to prosecute those who violate sanctions meant to stem the flow of money to terrorists groups,” said U.S. Attorney Jessie K. Liu for the District of Columbia. “Our message to those who violate sanctions is that you will be found, and you will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.”

 

According to the statement of facts signed by Tajideen in conjunction with his plea, after his designation, Tajideen conspired with at least five other persons to conduct over $50 million in transactions with U.S. businesses that violated these prohibitions. In addition, Tajideen and his co-conspirators knowingly engaged in transactions outside of the United States, which involved transmissions of as much as $1 billion through the United States financial system from places outside the United States.

 

This case was investigated by DEA SOD’s Counter Narcoterrorism Operations Center and the DEA New Jersey Field Division, with support from the Customs and Border Protection’s National Targeting Center/Counter Network Division, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network and Office of Foreign Assets Control, the Criminal Division’s Office of International Affairs, and the Counterintelligence and Export Control Section of the National Security Division.

 

The case was prosecuted by Trial Attorney Joseph Palazzo of the Money Laundering and Asset Recovery Section and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Thomas A. Gillice, Luke Jones, Karen Seifert and Deborah Curtis and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Jacqueline L. Barkett of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia.

Statement by FinCEN Director Kenneth A. Blanco in Support of Yesterday’s Anti-Terrorism Financing Actions by Argentina and Its Financial Intelligence Unit

Immediate Release

“Yesterday, Argentina’s Unidad de Informaciὀn Financiera de la República Argentina (UIF-AR) took courageous actionto freeze assets belonging to the Hezbollah terrorist organization and list them on a public registry pursuant to a new law just instituted by the Marci government of Argentina to designate, sanction, and publicly list terrorist organizations along with the individuals and entities connected to them. I commend Argentina’s strong and unbreakable resolve to take action against terrorism and suppress terrorist financing.

The people of the United States and the people of Argentina share a tragic pain.  Argentines and Americans know the suffering that comes from the loss of loved ones due to cowardly terrorist acts.  On the twenty-fifth anniversary of the devastating Asociación Mutual Israelita Argentina (AMIA) bombing in Argentina that cost the lives of 85 innocent people and left 500 injured, the UIF-AR has taken bold action to seek justice and ensure that terrorists face dire consequences.  Both of our nations have learned the hard lesson that financial vigilance and effective regulations can save lives and keep our people safe. 

FinCEN is proud of the work we are doing together with our Argentine partners, including our collaboration to assist and support the UIF-AR’s action against the Hezbollah-linked ‘Clan Barakat,’ a criminal organization infamous for its suspected involvement in smuggling, counterfeiting, extortion, drug trafficking, arms trafficking, money laundering, and terrorist financing.  We continue to value our strong partnership and shared commitment to fight terrorism and the financing that supports it.”



Link:

FinCEN Notice

On Friday, OFAC added the following person:

SALMAN, Salman Raouf (a.k.a. AL-REDA, Salman; a.k.a. AL-RIDA, Samwil Salman; a.k.a. EL-REDA, Samuel Salman; a.k.a. REMAL, Salman; a.k.a. SALMAN, Salman Raof; a.k.a. SALMAN, Salman Rauf; a.k.a. “MARQUEZ, Andree”), Lebanon; DOB 05 Jun 1963; alt. DOB 1965; nationality Colombia; alt. nationality Lebanon; Additional Sanctions Information – Subject to Secondary Sanctions Pursuant to the Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations; Gender Male; Passport AD 059541 (Colombia); alt. Passport AC 128856 (Colombia); National ID No. 84.049.097 (Colombia) (individual) [SDGT] (Linked To: HIZBALLAH).  

to its counter terrorism sanctions.

And Treasury issued the following press release:

PRESS RELEASES

Treasury Targets Senior Hizballah Operative for Perpetrating and Plotting Terrorist Attacks in the Western Hemisphere 

Washington – Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated a senior member of Hizballah’s External Security Organization (ESO), which is responsible for the planning, coordination, and execution of terrorist attacks outside of Lebanon.  Specifically, OFAC designated Salman Raouf Salman for acting for or on behalf of Hizballah.  Salman was designated under Executive Order (E.O.) 13224, which targets terrorists and those providing support to terrorists or acts of terrorism. 

“This Administration will continue to target Hizballah terrorists who plot horrific murderous operations and indiscriminately kill innocent civilians on behalf of this violent group and its Iranian patrons.  We are targeting Salman Raouf Salman, who coordinated a devastating attack in Buenos Aires, Argentina against the largest Jewish center in South America 25 years ago and has directed terrorist operations in the Western Hemisphere for Hizballah ever since,” said Sigal Mandelker, Treasury’s Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence.  “The United States will continue to work with the Government of Argentina, and our friends throughout the region and the world, to ensure that Hizballah operatives can never disassociate themselves from their terrorist actions, and to prevent them from carrying out new attacks that enable Iran’s malign agenda.”

Today’s action underscores that Hizballah is first and foremost a terrorist organization, despite its attempts to falsely portray itself as a legitimate political entity.  It is a reminder that prior to the attacks of September 11, 2001, Hizballah was the terrorist group responsible for the most American deaths.  Hizballah is responsible for carrying out the largest terrorist attack in the history of Argentina and all of Latin America.  This action also highlights Hizballah’s ongoing operational presence in the Western Hemisphere and that Hizballah continues to pose a threat to the region by actively plotting attacks against civilian targets.  This is particularly evidenced by Salman’s direct role in a recent terrorist plot targeting innocent civilians in Chile and Peru, which was successfully disrupted by security services.

Hizballah was designated by the Department of State as a Foreign Terrorist Organization in October 1997 and as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) pursuant to E.O. 13224 in October 2001.  It was listed in January 1995 in the Annex to E.O. 12947, which targets terrorists who threaten to disrupt the Middle East peace process, and also designated in August 2012 pursuant to E.O. 13582, which targets the Government of Syria and its supporters.

SALMAN RAOUF SALMAN

Salman Raouf Salman (Salman) acts for or on behalf of Hizballah.

Salman is a senior member of Hizballah’s ESO (also known as the Islamic Jihad Organization), Hizballah’s elite unit commanded by U.S.-designated Talal Hamiyah, which functions as the strategic arm and operational unit of Hizballah abroad.  In this role, Salman directs Hizballah’s foreign operations from Lebanon.  Talal Hamiyah was designated pursuant to E.O. 13224 in September 2012 for providing support for Hizballah’s activities.  Salman is also the subject of an INTERPOL Red Notice.

Salman has a long history of leadership and operational planning within Hizballah, having served as one of the most prominent operatives behind the Asociacion Mutual Israelita Argentina (AMIA) bombing, the 1994 attack on the community center for the largest Jewish community in South America, which killed 85 innocent people and wounded hundreds more.  In the aftermath of the AMIA bombing, Argentine security officials determined that Salman had been in contact with U.S.-designated Assad Barakat leading up to the attack, and that Salman was the coordinator of Hizballah sleeper cells in Buenos Aires and the Tri-Border Area of Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay.  Barakat was designated pursuant to E.O. 13224 in June 2004 for generating funding for Hizballah.  Salman had provided all necessary support to perpetrate the terrorist attack against the AMIA building, coordinating the activities of the Hizballah attack squad in Buenos Aires, and maintaining communication with Hizballah leaders in Lebanon and the operations logistics command center in the Tri-Border Area.

Since his role in the AMIA bombing in Buenos Aires, Salman has risen through the ranks of Hizballah.  Salman fled the region after the bombing, and in the years that followed, served as a member of the ESO, with particular focus on Southeast Asia and South America in the 1990s, including a flurry of operational missions in 1997 with three visits to Panama, two to Colombia, and one to Brazil.

More recently, Salman was identified as the Hizballah operative who served as the handler for U.S.­designated Mohammed Hamdar, who was arrested by Peruvian counterterrorism police in October 2014 for planning a terrorist operation in Peru.  At the time of his arrest, police raided his home and found traces of explosives, detonators, and other flammable substances, and a search of the garbage outside his home found chemicals used to manufacture explosives.  Hamdar’s targets included places associated with Israelis and the Jewish community in Peru, as well as areas popular with Israeli backpackers, the Israeli embassy in Lima, and Jewish community institutions.  Following Hamdar’s arrest, he identified Salman as his Hizballah handler.  Hamdar was designated pursuant to E.O. 13224 in October 2016 for acting on behalf of Hizballah.

DESIGNATION RELATED TO REWARDS FOR JUSTICE PROGRAM AND ARGENTINIAN ACTION

Today’s action follows the designation of Salman Raouf Salman by the Government of Argentina on July 18, 2019. It also is announced in tandem with the State Department’s July 19, 2019 announcement of a Rewards for Justice (RFJ) reward offer of up to $7,000,000 for the identification or location of Salman Raouf Salman.  The program provides rewards for information that helps bring terrorists to justice, prevents international acts of terrorism against U.S. persons or property, leads to the identification or location of a key terrorist leader, or disrupts terrorist financing.  For more information about the reward offer or to submit information on Salman, visit the Rewards for Justice website at  www.rewardsforjustice.net or contact the Rewards for Justice office via the confidential e-mail at LH@rewardsforjustice.net

SANCTIONS IMPLICATIONS

The Treasury Department continues to prioritize disruption of the full range of Hizballah’s illicit financial and facilitation activities, and with this action has designated over 50 Hizballah-affiliated individuals and entities since 2017.

As a result of today’s action, all property and interests in property of this target that are in the United States or in the possession or control of U.S. persons must be blocked and reported to OFAC.  OFAC’s regulations generally prohibit all dealings by U.S. persons or within the United States (including transactions transiting the United States) that involve any property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons.  In addition, persons that engage in certain transactions with the individual designated today may themselves be exposed to sanctions or subject to an enforcement action.  

Furthermore, the individual designated today is subject to secondary sanctions pursuant to the Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations, which implements the Hizballah International Financing Prevention Act of 2015, as amended by the Hizballah International Financing Prevention Amendments Act of 2018.  Pursuant to this authority, OFAC can prohibit or impose strict conditions on the opening or maintaining in the United States of a correspondent account or a payable-through account by a foreign financial institution that knowingly facilitates a significant transaction for Hizballah, or a person acting on behalf of or at the direction of, or owned or controlled by, Hizballah.

View identifying information related to today’s action.

And the State Department’s Rewards for Justice program issued the following notice of its $7 million bounty:

The U.S. Department of State’s Rewards for Justice Program is offering a reward of up to $7 million for information leading to the identification or location of Salman Raouf Salman, also known as Samuel Salman El Reda, a key leader of Hizballah. Salman is most well-known for his prominent role in the July 18, 1994, bombing of the Argentine Jewish Mutual Aid Society (AMIA), a Jewish community center in Buenos Aires, Argentina, which resulted in the deaths of 85 innocent civilians.

Salman is a leader of Hizballah’s External Security Organization (ESO), which is responsible for planning, coordinating, and executing Hizballah terrorist attacks around the globe. Not only does he direct and support Hizballah terrorist activities in the Western Hemisphere, he has been involved in plots worldwide.

Concurrently with today’s Rewards for Justice reward offer, the U.S. Department of the Treasury designated Salman as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist pursuant to Executive Order 13224. As a result of the designation, all of Salman’s assets that are based in the United States or in the possession or control of U.S. persons are frozen, and U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with him.

More information about these reward offers is located on the Rewards for Justice website at www.rewardsforjustice.net. We encourage anyone with information on Salman Raouf Salman to contact the Rewards for Justice office via the website, e-mail to LH@rewardsforjustice.net, or the Regional Security Officer at the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.  All information will be kept strictly confidential.

The Rewards for Justice Program is administered by the U.S. Department of State’s Diplomatic Security Service. Since its inception in 1984, the program has paid in excess of $150 million to more than 100 people who provided actionable information that helped bring terrorists to justice or prevented acts of international terrorism worldwide. Follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/Rewards4Justice.

Links:

OFAC Notice

Treasury Press Release

Rewards for Justice Notice

Yesterday, OFAC added:

RA’D, Muhammad Hasan (a.k.a. RAAD, Mohammad; a.k.a. RAAD, Mohammed; a.k.a. RA’AD, Muhammad; a.k.a. RA’D, Muhammad; a.k.a. RAED, Mohamad; a.k.a. RAED, Mohamed), Beirut, Lebanon; DOB 28 Aug 1955; Additional Sanctions Information – Subject to Secondary Sanctions Pursuant to the Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations; Gender Male; National ID No. 307321 (Lebanon) (individual) [SDGT] (Linked To: HIZBALLAH). 

 

SAFA, Wafiq (a.k.a. SAFA, Wafic; a.k.a. SAFA, Wafiq ‘Abd-al-Husayn; a.k.a. SAFA, Wafiq Ahmad; a.k.a. “AL-DIN, Hessam Badr”; a.k.a. “AL-ZAIN, Ali Wahib”), Lebanon; DOB 01 Sep 1960; alt. DOB 17 Mar 1965; POB Zibdin, Lebanon; alt. POB Zubaydah al-Jonubi, Lebanon; alt. POB Rayhan, Lebanon; Additional Sanctions Information – Subject to Secondary Sanctions Pursuant to the Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations; Gender Male; National ID No. 494606 (Lebanon); alt. National ID No. 000012505210 (Lebanon) (individual) [SDGT] (Linked To: HIZBALLAH). 

 

SHERRI, Amin (a.k.a. CHERRI, Amin; a.k.a. SHARI, ‘Amin Abi; a.k.a. SHARY, Amin Muhammad; a.k.a. SHIRRI, Ameen; a.k.a. SHIRRI, Amin; a.k.a. SHRI, Amin), Beirut, Lebanon; DOB 02 Aug 1957; Additional Sanctions Information – Subject to Secondary Sanctions Pursuant to the Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations; Gender Male; National ID No. 380858 (Lebanon) (individual) [SDGT] (Linked To: HIZBALLAH).

to their Hizballah counter-terrorism sanctions (with secondary sanctions attached, of course).

And there were press releases from the Treasury:

Treasury Targets Iranian-Backed Hizballah Officials for Exploiting Lebanon’s Political and Financial System

Washington – Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated key Hizballah political and security figures leveraging their privileged positions to facilitate Hizballah’s malign agenda and do Iran’s bidding.  Specifically, OFAC designated Hizballah Members of Parliament Amin Sherri and Muhammad Hasan Ra’d, and Hizballah security official Wafiq Safa, for acting for or on behalf of Hizballah.  These individuals were designated under Executive Order (E.O.) 13224, which targets terrorists and those providing support to terrorists or acts of terrorism. 

“Hizballah uses its operatives in Lebanon’s parliament to manipulate institutions in support of the terrorist group’s financial and security interests, and to bolster Iran’s malign activities” said Sigal Mandelker, Treasury’s Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence. “Hizballah threatens the economic stability and security of Lebanon and the wider region, all at a cost to the Lebanese people. The United States will continue to support efforts of the Lebanese government to protect its institutions from exploitation by Iran and its terrorist proxies, and to secure a more peaceful and prosperous future for Lebanon.”

This action highlights how Hizballah uses its political power to corrupt and exploit Lebanon’s financial and security elements, taking advantage of the country’s democratic system and values.  Today’s designations also underscore that there is no distinction between Hizballah’s political and violent activities.  Hizballah itself makes no distinction between its military and political wings, as Hizballah’s own leaders have acknowledged publicly, including Muhammad Hasan Ra’d, who said in 2001, “Hizballah is a military resistance party…. There is no separation between politics and resistance.” 

Amin Sherri and Muhammad Hasan Ra’d are Hizballah members of the Lebanese Parliament.  As a Hizballah Member of Parliament, Sherri exploits his political office to advance Hizballah’s objectives, which often run counter to the benefit of the Lebanese people and government.  His efforts to threaten Lebanese financial institutions on behalf of Hizballah, as noted below, demonstrate the extreme steps he takes to advocate for Hizballah’s agenda of intimidation and violence, at the cost of a legitimate sector that is the backbone of the Lebanese economy.  Sherri’s behavior threatening bank employees and their family members is unacceptable for a Member of Parliament whose office should advance the interests of the Lebanese people.    

Ra’d is both a Member of Parliament and a member of Hizballah’s Shura Council, which directs Hizballah units to carry out overseas military and terrorist attacks.  As Hizballah’s “highest command,” the Shura Council is responsible for deciding religious and strategic matters, and has overall administrative, planning, and policy-making powers.  Rather than advocating for political decisions that would address the economic plight of the communities he represents, he continues to prioritize Hizballah’s activities and hold Lebanon’s prosperity hostage.  The designation of Ra’d who heads Hizballah’s Parliamentary Council, one of the Shura Council’s five subordinate councils, builds upon previous actions targeting Hizballah’s Shura Council.[1] 

The third individual designated today, Wafiq Safa, serves as a Hizballah interlocutor to the Lebanese security forces.  As the head of Hizballah’s security apparatus, which is directly linked to Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah, Safa has exploited Lebanon’s ports and border crossings to smuggle contraband and facilitate travel on behalf of Hizballah, undermining the security and safety of the Lebanese people, while also draining valuable import duties and revenue away from the Lebanese government.  

Hizballah was designated by the Department of State as a Foreign Terrorist Organization in October 1997 and as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) pursuant to E.O. 13224 in October 2001.  It was listed in January 1995 in the Annex to E.O. 12947, which targets terrorists who threaten to disrupt the Middle East peace process, and also designated in August 2012 pursuant to E.O. 13582, which targets the Government of Syria and its supporters.

AMIN SHERRI

Amin Sherri (Sherri) was designated for acting for or on behalf of Hizballah.

As a Hizballah Member of Parliament, Sherri serves as an interlocutor for Hizballah’s interests within the Lebanese community and has used the weight of his representative role within Hizballah to influence decision making and pressure financial institutions to assist Hizballah in limiting the impact of U.S. sanctions.  For example, Sherri, on behalf of Hizballah, threatened Lebanese bank officials and their family members after the bank froze the accounts of U.S.-designated Hizballah member, whom OFAC designated as an SDGT for assisting in, sponsoring, or providing financial, material, or technological support for, or financial or other services to or in support of, Hizballah.  

Sherri’s illicit activities are also apparent in his extensive ties to other Hizballah associates and financiers.  Sherri has maintained a close relationship with Adham Tabaja, a Hizballah financier, whom OFAC designated as an SDGT in June 2015 for providing support and services to Hizballah.  Sherri and Tabaja have continued to do business together despite the latter’s designation.  Sherri and Tabaja, among others, founded and were involved in a Lebanon-based company.  Sherri also facilitated Tabaja’s access to Lebanese banks and was directed by Hizballah Secretary General Nasrallah to settle issues related to his designation. 

Underscoring the lack of distinction between Hizballah’s political and military activities, Sherri also appears publically with Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force (IRGC-QF) Commander Qasem Soleimani, whom OFAC designated in October 2011, for acting for or on behalf of the IRGC-QF (see photo below).

Photo of Qasem Soleimani (left) and Amin Sherri (right)

Photo of Qasem Soleimani (left) and Amin Sherri (right)

MUHAMMAD HASAN RA’D

Muhammad Hasan Ra’d (Ra’d) was designated for acting for or on behalf of Hizballah.

Ra’d was elected to Hizballah’s Shura Council in 2009 and is part of Hizballah Secretary General Nasrallah’s inner circle.  Ra’d also is the head of Hizballah’s Parliamentary Council, which consists of Hizballah Members of Parliament, and oversees how the Loyalty to the Resistance Bloc operates.  Additionally, this council ensures that parliamentary representatives, such as Ra’d and Sherri, carry out Shura Council decisions and policies, and conform to the party’s agenda. 

Ra’d also has ties to Hizballah associates and financiers.  In 2017, Ra’d met with Hizballah businessmen Adham Tabaja and Husayn Ali Fa’ur to ensure Hizballah’s funding mechanisms would remain open despite sanctions.  OFAC designated Husayn Ali Fa’ur as an SDGT in June 2015 for providing support and services to Hizballah.  Additionally, Ra’d and Wafiq Safa maintained a list of a hundred Hizballah members who were to acquire foreign citizenship.  With these passports, these individuals would be sent by Hizballah on long-term missions to Arab and Western countries. 

Photo of Muhammad Hasan Ra’d

Photo of Muhammad Hasan Ra’d

WAFIQ SAFA 

Wafiq Safa (Safa) was designated for acting for or on behalf of Hizballah.

Safa is in charge of Hizballah’s Liaison and Coordination Unit and is responsible for Hizballah’s coordination with the international community and with Lebanese security agencies.  Safa was appointed by Hizballah Secretary General Nasrallah in 1987 as the head of the Security Committee, which was later renamed the Liaison and Coordination Unit.  As one of Hizballah’s prominent leaders, Safa is a part of Hizballah Secretary General Nasrallah’s inner circle.

As the head of Hizballah’s security apparatus, Safa has exploited Lebanon’s ports and border crossings to smuggle contraband and facilitate travel on behalf of Hizballah.  For example, Hizballah leveraged Safa to facilitate the passage of items, including illegal drugs and weapons, into the port of Beirut, Lebanon.  Hizballah specifically routed certain shipments through Safa to avoid scrutiny.  Additionally, as of 2018, Hizballah facilitated favors at the Beirut airport.  Safa also facilitated travel for Hizballah associates through a border crossing. 

Safa also has ties to Hizballah associates and financiers.  Safa maintained a close relationship with Hizballah financier Adham Tabaja.  Additionally, Safa and Ra’d maintained a list of a hundred Hizballah members who were to acquire foreign citizenship.  With these passports, these individuals would be sent by Hizballah on long-term missions to Arab and Western countries. 

In 2010, there were internal Hizballah accusations of corruption involving Safa; however, Hizballah has since continued to allow him to maintain a prominent role in the organization.  Safa was accused of smuggling, other crimes, and immoral behavior. 

Photo of Wafiq Safa

Photo of Wafiq Safa

SANCTIONS IMPLICATIONS

The Treasury Department continues to prioritize disruption of the full range of Hizballah’s illicit financial activity, and with this action has designated 50 Hizballah-affiliated individuals and entities since 2017.

As a result of today’s action, all property and interests in property of these targets that are in the United States or in the possession or control of U.S. persons must be blocked and reported to OFAC.  OFAC’s regulations generally prohibit all dealings by U.S. persons or within the United States (including transactions transiting the United States) that involve any property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons.  In addition, persons that engage in certain transactions with the individuals and entities designated today may themselves be exposed to sanctions or subject to an enforcement action.  

Furthermore, the three individuals designated today are subject to secondary sanctions pursuant to the Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations, which implements the Hizballah International Financing Prevention Act of 2015, as amended by the Hizballah International Financing Prevention Amendments Act of 2018.  Pursuant to this authority, OFAC can prohibit or impose strict conditions on the opening or maintaining in the United States of a correspondent account or a payable-through account by a foreign financial institution that knowingly facilitates a significant transaction for Hizballah, or a person acting on behalf of or at the direction of, or owned or controlled by, Hizballah.

View identifying information related to today’s action here.

####

[1] On May 16, 2018, the United States, in partnership with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the co-chair of the Terrorist Financing Targeting Center (TFTC), and the other TFTC member states – the Kingdom of Bahrain, the State of Kuwait, the Sultanate of Oman, the State of Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates – designated members of Hizballah’s Shura Council.  Specifically, on that day, OFAC, together with Gulf partners, designated Hasan Nasrallah, the Secretary General of Hizballah.  OFAC and the TFTC nations further designated Naim Qasim, Muhammad Yazbak, Husayn Al- Khalil, and Ibrahim al-Amin al-Sayyid pursuant to E.O. 13224, which targets terrorists and those providing support to terrorists or acts of terrorism.  OFAC previously designated Hizballah Secretary General Nasrallah pursuant to E.O. 12947, “Prohibiting Transactions with Terrorists Who Threaten to Disrupt the Middle East Peace Process,” on January 23, 1995 and pursuant to E.O. 13582, “Blocking Property of the Government of Syria and Prohibiting Certain Transactions with Respect to Syria,” on September 13, 2012.

and State Departments:

The United States designated three senior Hizballah political and security officials today who leverage their positions to facilitate Hizballah and the Iranian regime’s malign efforts to undermine Lebanese sovereignty. These officials have exploited their positions to smuggle illicit goods into Lebanon, pressure Lebanese financial institutions to assist Hizballah, undermine Lebanese institutions, and evade U.S. sanctions against Hizballah facilitators and financiers.

Today’s designations are part of the United States’ efforts to counter Hizballah’s corrupting influence in Lebanon, and to support Lebanon’s stability, prosperity, and sovereignty. The United States’ maximum pressure campaign against the Iranian regime – the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism – and its proxies has already succeeded in limiting the financial support Hizballah receives. As a result, this designated terrorist organization has been forced to take unprecedented austerity measures. For example, in March 2019, for the first time ever, Hizballah’s leader Hassan Nasrallah made a public appeal for financial support.

As these designations demonstrate, any distinction between Hizballah’s political and military wings is artificial – a fact Hizballah itself acknowledges. We call on our allies and partners to designate Hizballah in its entirety as a terrorist organization.

Links:

OFAC Notice

Treasury Press Release, Arabic version

State Press Release

Yesterday, OFAC added the following person:

HAZZIMA, Husain Ali (a.k.a. HAZIME, Hussein Ali; a.k.a. “Mourtada”), Harat Hreiq, Beirut, Lebanon; DOB 07 Dec 1967; POB Beirut, Lebanon; Gender Male (individual) [SDGT].

and entity:

BALOCHISTAN LIBERATION ARMY (a.k.a. BALOCH LIBERATION ARMY; a.k.a. “BLA”), Balochistan, Pakistan [SDGT].

to its counter terrorism sanctions, and amended the following entity listing:

JUNDALLAH (a.k.a. ARMY OF GOD (GOD’S ARMY); a.k.a. BALOCH PEOPLES RESISTANCE MOVEMENT (BPRM); a.k.a. FEDAYEEN-E-ISLAM; a.k.a. FORMER JUNDALLAH OF IRAN; a.k.a. JONBESH-I MOQAVEMAT-I-MARDOM-I IRAN; a.k.a. JONDALLAH; a.k.a. JONDOLLAH; a.k.a. JONDULLAH; a.k.a. JUNDOLLAH; a.k.a. JUNDULLAH; a.k.a. PEOPLE’S RESISTANCE MOVEMENT OF IRAN (PMRI); a.k.a. SOLDIERS OF GOD; a.k.a. THE POPULAR RESISTANCE MOVEMENT OF IRAN), Iran; Pakistan; Afghanistan [FTO] [SDGT]. -to- JAYSH AL-ADL (a.k.a. ARMY OF GOD (GOD’S ARMY); a.k.a. ARMY OF JUSTICE; a.k.a. BALOCH PEOPLES RESISTANCE MOVEMENT (BPRM); a.k.a. FEDAYEEN-E-ISLAM; a.k.a. FORMER JUNDALLAH OF IRAN; a.k.a. JAISH ALADL; a.k.a. JAISH AL-ADL; a.k.a. JAISH UL-ADL; a.k.a. JEISH AL-ADL; a.k.a. JEYSH AL-ADL; a.k.a. JONBESH-I MOQAVEMAT-I-MARDOM-I IRAN; a.k.a. JONDALLAH; a.k.a. JONDOLLAH; a.k.a. JONDULLAH; a.k.a. JUNDALLAH; a.k.a. JUNDOLLAH; a.k.a. JUNDULLAH; a.k.a. PEOPLE’S RESISTANCE MOVEMENT OF IRAN (PMRI); a.k.a. SOLDIERS OF GOD; a.k.a. THE POPULAR RESISTANCE MOVEMENT OF IRAN), Iran; Pakistan; Afghanistan [FTO] [SDGT].

And the State Department issued a press release:

The Department of State has designated the Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) and Hizballah operative Husain Ali Hazzima as Specially Designated Global Terrorists (SDGTs) under Executive Order (E.O.) 13224. Additionally, the Department of State has amended the terrorist designations of Jundallah to reflect the group’s new primary name Jaysh al-Adl and associated aliases. These aliases have been added to the group’s designation as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) under Section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), and as an SDGT under E.O. 13224. The Department has also reviewed and maintained the FTO designation of Jundallah. Today’s actions seek to deny Hazzima, BLA, and Jaysh al-Adl the resources to plan and carry out terrorist attacks. All of their property and interests in property subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked, and U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in any transactions with them.

  • Husain Ali Hazzima is the Chief of Hizballah Unit 200. Hizballah was designated as an FTO in 1997 and as an SDGT in 2001. Unit 200 is the Intelligence Unit of Hizballah, and it analyzes and assesses information collected by Hizballah military units.

  • BLA is an armed separatist group that targets security forces and civilians, mainly in ethnic Baloch areas of Pakistan. BLA has carried out several terrorist attacks in the past year, including a suicide attack in August 2018 that targeted Chinese engineers in Balochistan, a November 2018 attack on the Chinese consulate in Karachi, and a May 2019 attack against a luxury hotel in Gwadar, Balochistan.

  • Jundallah, which was designated as an FTO and SDGT in 2010, began using the new name Jaysh al-Adl and associated aliases in 2012. Since its inception, the group has engaged in numerous attacks that have killed scores of Iranian civilians and government officials, including a February 2019 suicide bombing and the October 2018 kidnapping of Iranian security personnel.

Today’s actions notify the U.S. public and the international community that Hazzima and BLA have committed, or poses a significant risk of committing, acts of terrorism, and that Jundallah, having adopted the new name Jaysh al-Adl, continues to engage in terrorism that threatens the national security of the United States. Terrorist designations expose and isolate organizations and individuals, and deny them access to the U.S. financial system. Moreover, designations can assist the law enforcement activities of U.S. agencies and other governments.

A list of State Department-designated individuals and entities is available here: https://www.state.gov/terrorist-designations-and-state-sponsors-of-terrorism/.

Links:

OFAC Notice

State Department Press Release

Yesterday, OFAC designated the following persons:

BAZZI, Wael (a.k.a. BAZZI, Wa’el; a.k.a. BAZZI, Wa’il Muhammad), Eglantierlaan 15, Antwerpen 2020, Belgium; DOB 01 Oct 1989 to 31 Oct 1989; alt. DOB 31 Oct 1989; POB Freetown, Sierra Leone; nationality Belgium; Additional Sanctions Information – Subject to Secondary Sanctions Pursuant to the Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations; Gender Male; Passport EN312261 (Belgium); National ID No. 89103150321 (individual) [SDGT] (Linked To: BAZZI, Mohammad Ibrahim).

TABAJA, Hassan (a.k.a. TABAJA, Hasan; a.k.a. TABAJA, Hasan Husayn; a.k.a. TABAJA, Hassan Hussain), Lebanon; DOB 08 Oct 1971; POB Chiah, Lebanon; Additional Sanctions Information – Subject to Secondary Sanctions Pursuant to the Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations; Gender Male; Passport RL 0913767 (Lebanon); Identification Number 371923 (Lebanon); Residency Number 62270869 (United Arab Emirates) (individual) [SDGT] (Linked To: TABAJA, Adham Husayn). 

and organizations:

BSQRD LIMITED, Mansion House Manchester Road, Altrincham Chesire WA14 4RW, United Kingdom; Additional Sanctions Information – Subject to Secondary Sanctions Pursuant to the Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations; D-U-N-S Number 22-369-0096; Company Number 11207847 (United Kingdom) [SDGT] (Linked To: BAZZI, Wael).

OFFISCOOP NV, Frankrijklei 156, 5eVerd, Antwerpen 2000, Belgium; Additional Sanctions Information – Subject to Secondary Sanctions Pursuant to the Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations; D-U-N-S Number 37-163-1008; Branch Unit Number 2093373727 (Belgium); Enterprise Number 0473365047 (Belgium) [SDGT] (Linked To: BAZZI, Wael).

VOLTRA TRANSCOR ENERGY BVBA (a.k.a. VOLTRA TRANSCOR ENERGY; f.k.a. “SOFTLINE”), Frankrijklei 156 (5deV), Antwerpen 2000, Belgium; Additional Sanctions Information – Subject to Secondary Sanctions Pursuant to the Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations; D-U-N-S Number 37-339-4675; V.A.T. Number BE0443680473 (Belgium); Branch Unit Number 2052342727 (Belgium); Enterprise Number 0443680473 (Belgium) [SDGT] (Linked To: BAZZI, Wael). 

under the Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations, part of its counter terrorism sanctions program which come with secondary sanctions attached.

In addition, OFAC updated an existing designation:

GLOBAL TRADING GROUP NV (a.k.a. GLOBAL TRADING GROUP), Frankrijklei 39, 2nd Floor, Antwerpen 2000, Belgium; 22 Liverpool Street, Freetown, Sierra Leone; Standard Chartered Bank Building, 2nd floor, Kairaba Ave, Banjul, The Gambia; Rue de Canal, G83 Zone 4G, 01BP1280, Abidjan, Cote d Ivoire; Quartier les Cocotiers, Avenue Pape Jean Paul II, Lot 4274, Cotonou, Benin; Website http://www.globaltradinggroup.com; Additional Sanctions Information – Subject to Secondary Sanctions Pursuant to the Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations; D-U-N-S Number 37-117-1419 [SDGT] (Linked To: BAZZI, Mohammad Ibrahim). -to- ENERGY ENGINEERS PROCUREMENT AND CONSTRUCTION (a.k.a. GLOBAL TRADING GROUP; a.k.a. GLOBAL TRADING GROUP NV; a.k.a. “EEPC”), Frankrijklei 39, 2nd Floor, Antwerpen 2000, Belgium; 22 Liverpool Street, Freetown, Sierra Leone; Standard Chartered Bank Building, 2nd floor, Kairaba Ave, Banjul, The Gambia; Rue de Canal, G83 Zone 4G, 01BP1280, Abidjan, Cote d Ivoire; Quartier les Cocotiers, Avenue Pape Jean Paul II, Lot 4274, Cotonou, Benin; Frankrijklei 156 (5th floor), Antwerpen 2000, Belgium; Website http://www.globaltradinggroup.com; Additional Sanctions Information – Subject to Secondary Sanctions Pursuant to the Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations; D-U-N-S Number 37-117-1419 [SDGT] (Linked To: BAZZI, Mohammad Ibrahim).

And Treasury issued the following press release:

Treasury Targets Sanctions Evasion Conduits for Major Hizballah Financiers

Washington – Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) further targeted the global business operations of Hizballah by designating two individuals and three entities acting as conduits for sanctions evasion schemes.  Specifically, OFAC designated Belgium-based Wael Bazzi for acting for or on behalf of his father and Hizballah financier, Mohammad Bazzi.  OFAC designated Belgium-based Voltra Transcor Energy BVBA, Belgium-based OFFISCOOP NV, and United Kingdom-based BSQRD Limited for being owned or controlled by Wael Bazzi.  OFAC is also adding Energy Engineers Procurement and Construction as an alias for Global Trading Group NV (GTG), one of Mohammad Bazzi’s companies, which was designated in May 2018.  Additionally, OFAC designated Lebanon-based Hassan Tabaja for acting for or on behalf of his brother and Hizballah member and financier, Adham Tabaja.  These individuals and entities were designated under Executive Order (E.O.) 13224, which targets terrorists and those providing support to terrorists or acts of terrorism. 

“Treasury is relentlessly pursuing Hizballah’s financial facilitators by dismantling two of Hizballah’s most important financial networks.  As Hizballah continues to attempt to obscure its activities by using seemingly legitimate businesses, we will continue to take action against the front persons who hide the movement of money, including the relatives of designated terrorists,” said Sigal Mandelker, Treasury Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence.  “By targeting Hassan Tabaja and Wael Bazzi and their European-based companies, this Administration is continuing to disrupt all avenues of financial support relied upon by Hizballah.”

DESIGNATIONS BUILD ON REWARDS FOR JUSTICE PROGRAM

Today’s designation of Hassan Tabaja and Wael Bazzi and his companies builds on the State Department’s April 22, 2019 announcement of a Rewards for Justice (RFJ) reward offer for information leading to the disruption of Hizballah’s financial mechanisms.  The program provides rewards for information that helps bring terrorists to justice, prevents international acts of terrorism against U.S. persons or property, leads to the identification or location of a key terrorist leader, or disrupts terrorist financing.  OFAC is designating individuals and entities connected to two of the financiers highlighted in that announcement, Mohammad Bazzi and Adham Tabaja.  For more information about the reward offer or to submit information on Hizballah’s financial networks, visit the Rewards for Justice website at www.rewardsforjustice.net or contact the Rewards for Justice office via the confidential e-mail at LH@rewardsforjustice.net

Today’s action also builds on the unprecedented number of designations taken in 2018 exposing Hizballah’s terrorist support networks and pervasive use of seemingly legitimate businesses to launder money and foment regional conflict.  Hizballah and its proxies continue to use deceptive practices to circumvent sanctions, such as the use of family members and others to gain access to the formal financial system both in Lebanon and beyond.  As a standard practice, the regulated public should undertake know-your-customer due diligence to ensure awareness of the ultimate beneficiaries of transactions.  In cases with known links to designated terrorists, enhanced due diligence should be applied to ensure that the underlying activity is not in violation of U.S. sanctions.  The Treasury Department is determined to protect the integrity of the U.S., Lebanese, and international financial system to ensure that Hizballah cannot exploit them to further its political, financial, or operational agenda.  

As a result of today’s action, all property and interests in property of these persons, and of any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, 50 percent or more by the designated persons, 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 dealings by U.S. persons or within (or transiting) the United States that involve any property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons.

Additionally, the two individuals and three entities designated today are subject to secondary sanctions pursuant to the Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations, which implements the Hizballah International Financing Prevention Act of 2015.  Pursuant to this authority, OFAC can prohibit or impose strict conditions on the opening or maintaining in the United States of a correspondent account or a payable-through account by a foreign financial institution that knowingly facilitates a significant transaction for Hizballah, or a person acting on behalf of or at the direction of, or owned or controlled by, Hizballah.

Hizballah was designated by the Department of State as a Foreign Terrorist Organization in October 1997 and as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) pursuant to E.O. 13224 in October 2001.  It was listed in January 1995 in the Annex to E.O. 12947, which targets terrorists who threaten to disrupt the Middle East peace process, and also designated in August 2012 pursuant to E.O. 13582, which targets the Government of Syria and its supporters.

BACKGROUND ON ADHAM TABAJA AND MOHAMMAD BAZZI

OFAC designated Adham Tabaja as an SDGT in June 2015 for providing support and services to Hizballah.  Adham Tabaja is a Hizballah member and majority owner of the designated Lebanon-based real estate development and construction firm Al-Inmaa Group for Tourism Works and its subsidiaries.  His company has been used by Hizballah as an investment mechanism.  He maintains direct ties to senior Hizballah organizational elements, including the terrorist group’s operational component, the Islamic Jihad, the unit responsible for carrying out the group’s overseas terrorist activities.  Specifically, Islamic Jihad member Husayn Ali Faour, whom OFAC designated concurrently with Adham Tabaja in June 2015, has worked with Adham Tabaja to secure and manage construction, oil, and other projects in Iraq.  Adham Tabaja’s global network of seemingly legitimate businesses combined with his ties to Hizballah’s terrorist unit make it critically important that his access to the international financial system is severed to ensure that he cannot fund this terrorist group.

Adham Tabaja maintains ties to other major Hizballah financiers, including Mohammad Bazzi, whom OFAC designated as an SDGT in May 2018 for assisting in, sponsoring, or providing financial, material, or technological support for, or financial or other services to or in support of, Hizballah.  Mohammad Bazzi, who operates or transacts in or through Belgium, Lebanon, Iraq, and several countries in West Africa, provided Hizballah financial assistance for many years and has provided millions of dollars to Hizballah generated from his business activities.  In addition, Mohammad Bazzi was a close associate of Yahya Jammeh who was identified on December 20, 2017, in the annex to E.O. 13818, which implemented the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act.  Since his designation in May 2018, Mohammad Bazzi has continued to work with other Treasury-designated, senior Hizballah members.

WAEL BAZZI

Wael Bazzi was designated for acting for or on behalf of Mohammad Bazzi.

Since his designation in May 2018, Mohammad Bazzi has turned to his son, Wael Bazzi, to continue doing business in the Gambia.  Mohammad Bazzi has been able to conduct business through Wael Bazzi, upon whom he has continued to rely on to register new businesses and bid on Gambian government contracts.  Wael Bazzi formed a petroleum company to maintain his father’s access to the oil industry.  Additionally, Mohammad Bazzi coordinated with Wael Bazzi and a Belgium-based GTG employee to change GTG’s name after GTG’s designation.  Wael Bazzi was the purported owner of this new company, likely to obscure Mohammad Bazzi’s involvement and circumvent Mohammad Bazzi‘s designation. 

Wael Bazzi has helped Mohammad Bazzi and a Lebanon-based associate facilitate payments for a business contract.  Additionally, Wael Bazzi likely established an account for Voltra Transcor Energy, in connection with Mohammad Bazzi’s attempted use of an intermediary company to move money to GTG and circumvent OFAC sanctions.  In 2017, Mohammad Bazzi planned to submit his son, Wael Bazzi, to fill the Lebanese Consular position in the Gambia because he could exert his influence over Wael.  As of at least early 2018, Wael Bazzi has been witting of Mohammad Bazzi’s involvement in illicit activity.

On August 9, 2018, GTG changed its name to Energy Engineers Procurement and Construction.

DESIGNATED WAEL BAZZI-OWNED OR -CONTROLLED COMPANIES

Voltra Transcor Energy BVBA

Voltra Transcor Energy BVBA was designated for being owned or controlled by Wael Bazzi.

Wael Bazzi is the Chief Executive of Belgium-based Voltra Transcor Energy BVBA, which is involved in the petroleum products industry.  Wael Bazzi established an account for Voltra Transcor Energy, which Mohammad Bazzi attempted to use as an intermediary company to move money to GTG and circumvent OFAC sanctions. 

OFFISCOOP NV

OFFISCOOP NV was designated for being owned or controlled by Wael Bazzi.

Wael Bazzi is the Chief Executive, Managing Director, and Director of Belgium-based OFFISCOOP NV, which is involved in the management consulting services industry.

BSQRD Limited

BSQRD Limited was designated for being owned or controlled by Wael Bazzi.

Wael Bazzi is the Chief Executive, Director, and 50% owner of United Kingdom-based BSQRD Limited, which is involved in the computer-related services industry.

HASSAN TABAJA

Hassan Tabaja was designated for acting for or on behalf of Adham Tabaja.

Hassan Tabaja managed multiple properties in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) belonging to his brother, Adham Tabaja; however, in the summer of 2018 Emirati authorities took swift action against Hassan Tabaja and the assets he controlled as a result of his nefarious activities.  Hassan Tabaja is the legal representative for Adham Tabaja, has Power of Attorney (PoA) for him, and is named the executor of his property.  Accordingly, Hassan Tabaja was granted the power to make legal, real estate, and financial decisions; sign for business matters; buy and sell vehicles; take out loans; take out insurance policies; and cancel the PoA and any agreements in conjunction with and on behalf of Adham Tabaja.

Hassan Tabaja, likely on behalf of Adham Tabaja, has also pursued business transactions with Mohamad Noureddine, a Lebanese money launderer, whom OFAC designated as a SDGT pursuant to E.O. 13224 in January 2016, for providing financial services to or in support of, Hizballah.

What Mr. Watchlist wants to know is – did these designations directly derive from the reward offered just two days earlier under the Rewards for Justice program? If so, we are all dutifully impressed….

Links:

OFAC Notice

Treasury Press Release

Rewards for Justice – Reward Offer for Information on Hizballah’s Financial Networks

Media Note

Office of the Spokesperson

Washington, DC

April 22, 2019


The U.S. Department of State’s Rewards for Justice Program is offering a reward of up to $10 million for information leading to the disruption of the financial mechanisms of the global terrorist organization Lebanese Hizballah. This announcement marks the first time that the Department has offered a reward for information on Hizballah’s global financial networks.

Rewards can be provided for information leading to the identification and disruption of:

  • a source of revenue for Hizballah or its key financial facilitation mechanisms;

  • major Hizballah donors or financial facilitators;

  • financial institutions or exchange houses facilitating Hizballah transactions;

  • businesses or investments owned or controlled by Hizballah or its financiers;

  • front companies engaged in international procurement of dual-use technology on behalf of Hizballah; and

  • criminal schemes involving Hizballah members and supporters which financially benefit the organization.

Hizballah is a Lebanon-based terrorist organization that receives weapons, training, and funding from Iran, which the Secretary of State designated as a state sponsor of terrorism in 1984. Hizballah generates about a billion dollars a year from a combination of direct financial support from Iran, international businesses and investments, donor networks, and money laundering activities. The State Department designated Hizballah as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) in October 1997 under the Immigration and Nationality Act, and as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) in October 2001 under Executive Order (E.O.) 13224.

In addition to Hizballah’s global financial networks, the State Department is highlighting the following three individuals as examples of the type of key Hizballah financiers or facilitators about whom it seeks information. All three have been designated by the U.S. Department of the Treasury as SDGTs:

Adham Tabaja

Mohammad Ibrahim Bazzi

Ali Youssef Charara

More information about these reward offers is located on the Rewards for Justice website at

The Rewards for Justice Program is an effective law enforcement tool and is administered by the U.S. Department of State’s Diplomatic Security Service. Since its inception in 1984, the program has paid in excess of $150 million to more than 100 people who provided actionable information that helped bring terrorists to justice or prevented acts of international terrorism worldwide. Follow us on Twitter at

As it says, this is another way of blunting Iran’s influence in the world…

Link:

State Department Press Release