The US Department of Justice has unsealed an indictment charging three Iranian nationals with conspiracy to violate, attempted violation, and violation of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, 50 USC § 1701 et seq. (IEEPA) for their role in exporting carbon fiber from the US to Iran. One of the men, Behzad Pourghannad, has been extradited to the US from Germany. The other two, Ali Reza Shokri and Farzin Faridmanesh, remain at large.
According to the indictment, Pourghannad, Shokri, and Faridmanesh worked together on several occasions between 2007 and 2013 to purchase and transship several tons of carbon fiber, which can be used for aerospace engineering, advanced telescopes, and uranium enrichment, from the US through Europe, Dubai, Georgia, the United Arab Emirates and elsewhere, to Iran, changing the shipping labels to conceal the nature of the material being shipped. The carbon fiber exports were not authorized by the US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control.