On 9 March 2015, the US Treasury Department announced that it has designated seven individuals as Specially Designated Nationals (‘SDN’) in view of the situation in Venezuela.  The designations are made pursuant to an Executive Order and target individuals alleged to be involved in violence against anti-government protestors, serious human rights abuses, and the arrest or prosecution of individuals for their legitimate exercise of free speech.

Under the sanctions, listed individuals and entities will be barred from entering the United States, will have all of their assets within United States jurisdiction frozen, and US persons will generally be prohibited from engaging in transactions with them.

The individuals listed include the director general of Venezuela’s Bolivarian National Intelligence Service and the director of Venezuela’s Bolivarian National Police.  They are:

  1. Antonio Benavides
  2. Manuel Bernal
  3. Gustavo Gonzalez
  4. Katherine Haringhton
  5. Justo Noguera
  6. Manuel Perez
  7. Miguel Vivas

Speaking on 9 March 2015, US Secretary of the Treasury Jack Lew stated that the United States is “committed to defending human rights and advancing democratic governance in Venezuela through the use of financial sanctions”, adding that “Corrupt actions by Venezuelan government officials deprive Venezuela of needed economic resources that could be invested in the Venezuelan people and used to spur economic growth”.  Secretary Lew also emphasised that “This Executive Order will be used to protect the US financial system from the illicit financial flows from public corruption in Venezuela”.

This entry was posted in USA, Venezuela by Maya Lester QC. Bookmark the permalink.

About Maya Lester QC

Maya Lester QC has a wide ranging practice in public law, European law, competition law, international law, human rights & civil liberties. She has a particular expertise in sanctions. As the most recent (2016) Chambers & Partners directory put it, she "owns the world of sanctions". She spent 2011-12 in New York at Columbia Law School lecturing and writing on sanctions. She represents and advises hundreds of companies and individuals before the European and English courts and has acted in most of the leading cases, including Kadi, Tay Za, Central Bank of Iran, NITC and IRISL.

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