China`s ZTE Corp. agreed to oversee an independent observer in 2017 when it pleaded guilty to accusing the Justice Department of illegally exporting sensitive U.S. technology to Iran and repeatedly lying to investigators. “The deal in this case shows that ZTE has repeatedly violated export controls and illegally shipped U.S. technology to Iran,” Deputy Director Priestap said. “The company also took important steps to hide what it was doing from U.S. authorities. This case is an excellent example of cooperation between several US authorities to uncover illegal technology transfers and make those responsible for their actions pay. ZTE, the Chinese telecommunications giant that pleaded guilty three years ago to violating U.S. sanctions against Iran and North Korea, is the subject of a new separate investigation into corruption by the Justice Department, according to two people briefed on the matter. Criminal information was filed today in a federal court in the Northern District of Texas, where ZTE was charged with knowingly and deliberately conspiring to violate the IEEPA, a charge of obstruction of justice and a charge of material inaccuracy. ZTE waived the request to be indicted by federal indictment, agreed to file the information, and took responsibility for his criminal behavior by striking a deal with the government.
The plea agreement, which is subject to court approval, requires ZTE to pay a fine of $286,992,532 and a criminal charge of $143,496,266. The fine is the highest fine in an IEEPA prosecution. ZTE`s new audit comes shortly after the end of the corporate probationary period agreed under the March 2017 agreement with the Ministry of Justice. Under the terms of the agreement, ZTE agreed to a civil and criminal penalty and forfeiture of $1.19 billion. According to court documents, although it is aware of an ongoing grand jury investigation into its Iranian exports, ZTE has taken several steps to hide relevant information from the U.S. government. He has taken other positive steps to mislead the U.S. government.
In the summer of 2012, ZTE asked each of the employees involved in sales to Iran to sign non-disclosure agreements in which the employees agreed to keep confidential all information relating to the company`s U.S. exports to Iran. The plea agreement, which is subject to court approval, also requires ZTE to undergo a three-year corporate probation period, during which an independent company compliance monitor will review and report on ZTE`s export compliance program. ZTE is also required to fully cooperate with the Department of Justice (DOJ) with respect to any U.S. criminal investigation. Law enforcement agencies. The agreement concludes a five-year joint investigation into ZTE`s export practices conducted by the DOJ`s National Security Division, the U.S. Attorney`s Office for the Northern District of Texas, the FBI, the BIS and the Department of Homeland Security, and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Homeland Security Investigations. “ZTE has embarked on a sophisticated plan to acquire items from the United States, send the items to Iran and conceal its involvement in those exports.
The lawsuit agreement pending before the court alleges that the company`s highest levels of management approved the plan. ZTE then repeatedly lied to federal investigators, its own lawyers, and internal investigators and misled them. His actions were outrageous and deserved significant punishment,” said Deputy Attorney General McCord. “Enforcing U.S. export control and sanctions laws is an important part of the National Security Division`s commitment to protecting U.S. national security. Companies that violate these laws – including foreign companies – will be investigated and held accountable for their actions. ZTE has agreed to plead guilty and pay up to $1.2 billion in fines to settle allegations that it violated laws restricting the sale of U.S. technology to Iran, U.S. officials said Tuesday.
ZTE Corporation agreed to plead guilty and pay a fine of $430,488,798 in the United States for conspiring to violate the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) by illegally shipping goods originating in the United States to Iran, obstructing justice and making a material misrepresentation. ZTE has simultaneously entered into settlement agreements with the U.S. Department of Commerce`s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) and the U.S. Department of the Treasury`s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC). In total, ZTE agreed to pay the U.S. government $892,360,064. The BIS has suspended an additional $300,000,000 that ZTE will pay if it violates its settlement agreement with the BIS. The Chinese telecommunications equipment maker pleads guilty to three counts: conspiracy to export illegally, obstruction of justice and false statements to federal investigators, according to an agreement released by the Department of Justice (DOJ). Under the settlement agreement with the BIS and the agreement with the DOJ, ZTE is required, among other things, to (i) appoint an independent compliance auditor/monitor to assess ZTE`s compliance efforts and compliance with the terms of the plea agreement and U.S. sanctions and export controls, and to report to the U.S. government. (ii) provide annual audit reports on ZTE`s compliance with U.S.
export controls for the next six years, (iii) provide U.S. export control training to ZTE`s senior management, and (iv) implement a best-in-class export compliance program for ZTE. ZTE will pay $892 million to the United States and an additional $300 million, which will be suspended for a period of seven years if they do not meet the requirements of the agreement, which includes an independent compliance monitor. As is often the case with companies operating under advocacy agreements, ZTE was hired with a controller to assess compliance. James M. Stanton, a Texas attorney for the assaults, was appointed a guard by Ed Kinkeade, the U.S. district judge in Texas who oversaw the government`s lawsuit against ZTE. NBC News has not been able to determine which ZTE transactions in which countries federal prosecutors are investigating.
However, under the 2017 agreement with the Department of Justice, ZTE agreed to implement and maintain a compliance and ethics program to detect violations of sanctions and export controls. The implementation of the programs did not grant ZTE immunity for past crimes that the company had not disclosed to the U.S. government when signing the plea agreement, according to the documents. ZTE`s probation under the 2017 agreement ended on Saturday. During the probation period, ZTE agreed to cooperate with the Department of Justice in all criminal investigations conducted by U.S. law enforcement agencies. ZTE Corp. completes five-year investigation, ZTE Corp. (“ZTE”), the second largest manufacturer of telecommunications equipment in China, has entered into an agreement and settlement agreements with the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) with the U.S.
Department of Commerce`s Bureau of Industry (“BIS”) and the U.S. Treasury Department`s Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”) for violations of U.S. sanctions against Iran and U.S. export controls. False statements to the U.S. government and obstruction of justice (full plea/settlement agreements are available at the following links: DOJ, BIS, and OFAC). If the criminal case with the Department of Justice is approved by a federal judge, the combined fine of $1.19 billion and forfeiture never imposed by the U.S. government in an export control case. The Department of Commerce`s Bureau of Industry and Security will recommend removing ZTE from the list of blocked companies if it complies with the plea agreement and the court approves the Justice Department`s agreement. “ZTE Corporation not only violated export controls that keep sensitive U.S. technology out of the hands of hostile regimes like Iran — they lied to federal investigators and even deceived their own internal advisers and investigators about their illegal actions,” Attorney General Sessions said. .