|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE||
BUREAU OF INDUSTRY AND SECURITY
| Friday, December 7, 2007
Office of Public Affairs
Pennsylvania Company Fined for Export Violations
Involving Iran, UAE and Syria
WASHINGTON - The Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) today announced that Mine Safety Appliances Company (MSA) of Pittsburgh, has agreed to pay a $470,000 civil penalty. The settlement arose from allegations that MSA, through its branch office in Abu Dhabi, MSA Middle East, violated the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) on 107 occasions. The allegations relate to the reexport of safety and protection-related items from the UAE to Iran and Syria without the required export licenses.
"Preventing the diversion of U.S.- origin goods so that they do not support the economies of countries that sponsor terrorism, such as Syria and Iran, is extremely important," said Darryl Jackson, assistant secretary of commerce for export enforcement. "This case demonstrates that companies must take extra care when implementing compliance programs with foreign subsidiaries.”
BIS alleged that between May 2001 and December 2005, MSA Middle East made 107 reexports of EAR99 and controlled items, including helmets, gas masks, detection equipment, filters, and other related safety equipment to Iran and Syria from the UAE without the required U.S. Government authorization. All of the reexports were made by an individual who served as MSA Middle East’s general manager during this period.
MSA voluntarily disclosed these violations to BIS and cooperated fully in the investigation which is a mitigation factor. BIS also provided mitigation credit to MSA for its compliance efforts.
Parties who may have been involved in violations of the EAR are encouraged to submit a Voluntary Self Disclosure (VSD) to BIS’s Office of Export Enforcement, as provided in Part 764.5 of the EAR. VSDs are an important indicator of parties’ intent to bring themselves into compliance with the EAR, and may provide BIS important information on illicit proliferation networks. A VSD is considered a “great weight” mitigating factor in the settlement of BIS administrative cases.
The Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Export Enforcement Darryl W. Jackson commended the Office of Export Enforcement, New York Field Office, for its work on this investigation.