U.S. Seizes Iranian Fuel

| August 14, 2020

In this May 25, 2020 file photo, the Iranian oil tanker Fortune is anchored at the dock of the El Palito refinery near Puerto Cabello, Venezuela. ASSOCIATED PRESS

The Trump administration has for the first time confiscated cargo in vessels allegedly loaded with Iran fuel in violation of sanctions, U.S. officials said, as it steps up its campaign of maximum pressure against Tehran and Caracas.

U.S. federal prosecutors filed suit to seize the four tankers of fuel that Iran was sending to Venezuela. This is the latest move in the administration’s effort to stifle the economies of its two top foes.

U.S. seizes Iranian gas from 4 tankers headed to Venezuela

MIAMI — The Trump administration has seized the cargo of four tankers it was targeting for transporting Iranian fuel to Venezuela, U.S. officials said Thursday, as it steps up its campaign of maximum pressure against the two heavily sanctioned allies.

Last month, federal prosecutors in Washington filed a civil forfeiture complaint alleging that the sale was arranged by a businessman, Mahmoud Madanipour, with ties to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps, a U.S.-designated foreign terrorist organization. At the time, sanctions experts thought it would be impossible to enforce the U.S. court order in international waters.

A senior U.S. official told The Associated Press that no military force was used in the seizures and that the ships weren’t physically confiscated. Rather, U.S. officials threatened ship owners, insurers and captains with sanction to force them to hand over their cargo, which now becomes U.S. property, the official said.

Prosecutors alleged the four ships were transporting to Venezuela 1.1 million barrels of gasoline. But the tankers never arrived at the South American country and then went missing. Two of the ships later reappeared near Cape Verde, a second U.S. official said.

Both officials agreed to discuss the sensitive diplomatic and judicial offensive only if granted anonymity.

Iran’s ambassador to Venezuela, Hojad Soltani, pushed back on what would appear a victory for the U.S. sanctions campaign, saying Thursday on Twitter that neither the ships nor their owners were Iranian.

If his auntie had balls she’d be his uncle, too. Read the rest here: Market Watch

Category: Donald Trump, Iran, Venezuela

Comments (24)

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  1. Slow Joe says:

    Hell yeah!

  2. 5th/77th FA says:

    OK the way I think I read all of that, including the linky article, is we don’t really have physical possession of either the ships or the oil. And we’re not real sure where the ships are. But when and if the ships with the gas (?) do show up, it’s ours. Got it.

    Oh, and Larsie boi and the whole “ORANGE MAN BAD” crowd is all thru the comments part of the linky article, just using different screech names.

  3. OWB says:

    Nicely done, unless the cargo ends up some place even worse. Doubt that, though. Probably some place if not near the US at least near one of our allies.


  4. 26Limabeans says:

    The oil should be burned in place at sea.
    Or refined into 113 Octane gasoline for my old truck.

    Carbon baby! The building blocks of life and nectar of the Gods.

  5. Toxic Deplorable Racist SAH B Woodman says:

    Letters of Marque?

  6. Lawrence E Todd says:

    I thought Venezuela was an oil producer

  7. Poetrooper says:

    The money quote from MarketWatch:

    “Despite sitting atop the world’s largest crude reserves, Venezuela doesn’t produce enough domestically refined gasoline and has seen its overall crude production plunge to the lowest in over seven decades amid its economic crisis and fallout from U.S. sanctions.”

    And therein lies the truth about socialism. Of course, Lars will be long in a while to tell us Venezuela’s not socialist…

    • KoB says:

      Poe… 😆 😆 😆 😆 stop you killing me!!!! 😆 😆 😆 😆

      Or, It’s just not been done right, but we plan on getting it right here. Portland is the test bed…and Seattle…and………

    • Mason says:

      fallout from U.S. sanctions

      I believe he has taken issue with this part in the past. Without those sanctions, the argument goes, the socialism would be working.

    • USMCMSgt(Ret) says:

      Lars might admit Venezuela is a form of socialism, except he’ll explain they’re not doing it right, or some bullshit like that.

    • Graybeard says:

      True words.

      Dad installed some equipment on pump stations in the Lago Maracaibo when I was a kid. I got to ride out to the platforms and play on them while he was working (yeah, OSHA’d have kittens over that today).

      a beautiful country and great people – until the Socialists took over and ran it all into the ground.

      Not an example Lars wants to lend any credence to, though.

  8. No Mil. force was used to stop the ships, so the legal eagles must have gotten up oily to think this plan up.

  9. A Proud Infidel®™ says:

    So what are the Iranians gonna do in return, build another cheap mockup of a US Carrier and sink it in another one of their harbors? AS TO Venezuela, yeah, socialism is sure doing wonders for their chosen elite while everyone else lives in shit-eating squalor!

    • 11B-Mailclerk says:

      They can come up with something much more stupid and pointless and counterproductive.

    • rgr769 says:

      In Venezuela, the ordinary people have lost an average of 24 pounds per person in the past year. Maybe Maduro and his cronies could start marketing their country as giant weight loss spa.