US offers up to $5 million for info on North Korean shipper

Nov 3, 2022, 9:47 AM | Updated: 2:34 pm
FILE - This photo provided by the North Korean government shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un del...

FILE - This photo provided by the North Korean government shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un delivering a speech during a parliament in Pyongyang, North Korea on Sept. 8, 2022. (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP, File)

(Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration is offering a reward of up to $5 million for information about a Singapore-based businessman already accused by the Justice Department of facilitating fuel shipments to North Korea in violation of U.N. sanctions.

Kwek Kee Seng, who directs a shipping agency and terminal operations company, was charged last year with arranging the deliveries, with prosecutors alleging that he used front companies and false documentation to hide the scheme. Officials say that business helps enable North Korea’s nuclear proliferation programs.

Kwek remains at large despite a warrant that has been issued for his arrest. The State Department on Thursday said it was offering up to $5 million through its Rewards for Justice program.

The announcement of a reward came amid heightened tensions with North Korea, which on Thursday fired at least six missiles into the sea, including an intercontinental ballistic missile that triggered evacuation warnings and halted trains in northern Japan.

The Biden administration said in response to the launches that it is willing to take “all necessary measures” to ensure the safety of the American homeland as well as South Korea and Japan, and warned of unspecified “additional costs and consequences” if North Korea detonates a nuclear test device for the first time since September 2017.

Besides the criminal case, the U.S. government last year also took ownership of a tanker ship that was used for the fuel deliveries, the 2,734-ton M/T Courageous. One exchange caught on satellite imagery showed the ship transferring more than $1.5 million worth of oil to a North Korea-flagged ship, prosecutors have said.

Kwek was also among a group of people and firms sanctioned last month by the Treasury Department for helping North Korea procure fuel.

____

Follow Eric Tucker on Twitter at http://www.twitter/etuckerAP

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


              This image released by the FBI shows the wanted poster for Kwek Kee Seng. The Biden administration is offering a reward of up to $5 million for information about a Singapore-based businessman already accused by the Justice Department of facilitating fuel shipments to North Korea in violation of U.N. sanctions. Kwek Kee Seng, who directs a shipping agency and terminal operations company, was charged last year with arranging the deliveries, with prosecutors alleging that he used front companies and false documentation to hide the scheme. Officials say that business helps enable North Korea's nuclear proliferation programs. (FBI via AP)
            
              FILE - This photo provided by the North Korean government shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un delivering a speech during a parliament in Pyongyang, North Korea on Sept. 8, 2022. (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP, File)

AP

Associated Press

Plane caught in power lines after crash, 2 occupants unhurt

GAITHERSBURG, Md. (AP) — A small plane carrying two people got stuck in live power lines Sunday evening in Maryland, causing widespread power outages in the surrounding county as officials tried to extricate the aircraft. The Federal Aviation Administration said in a statement that the single-engine plane, which had departed White Plains, N.Y., crashed into […]
19 hours ago
This combination of photos provided by the Chesapeake, Va., Police Department shows top row from le...
Associated Press

Walmart shooting claims teen, young woman, father, mother

CHESAPEAKE, Va. (AP) — A 16-year-old helping his family. A custodian and father of two. A mother with wedding plans. A happy-go-lucky guy. A longtime employee. That’s how friends and family described some of the six people killed at a Walmart in Chesapeake, Virginia, when a manager opened fire with a handgun before an employee […]
19 hours ago
FILE - Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. walks on the sideline during a NFL division...
Associated Press

NFL free agent Odell Beckham Jr. taken off plane in Miami

MIAMI (AP) — NFL free agent Odell Beckham Jr. was removed by police from an aircraft before takeoff at Miami International Airport after officials said he failed to respond to requests to buckle his seatbelt and appeared to be unconscious, police and airline officials said Sunday. “Fearing that Mr. Beckham was seriously ill, and that […]
19 hours ago
FILE - Chickens walk in a fenced pasture at an organic farm in Iowa on Oct. 21, 2015. Nebraska agri...
Associated Press

Bird flu prompts slaughter of 1.8M chickens in Nebraska

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska agriculture officials say another 1.8 million chickens must be killed after bird flu was found on a farm in the latest sign that the outbreak that has already prompted the slaughter of more than 50 million birds nationwide continues to spread. The Nebraska Department of Agriculture said Saturday that the […]
19 hours ago
This photo provided by the U.S. Navy shows U.S. Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Thomas James in Centur...
Associated Press

Colorado shooting victim ‘wanted to save the family I found’

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — A member of the U.S. Navy who was injured while helping prevent further harm during a shooting at a gay nightclub in Colorado last weekend said Sunday that he “simply wanted to save the family that I found.” Petty Officer 2nd Class Thomas James made his first public comments on […]
19 hours ago
FILE - Director Quentin Tarantino, left, poses with Friars Club Dean Freddie Roman at the Quentin T...
Associated Press

Borscht Belt comedian Freddie Roman dies at age 85

Comedian Freddie Roman, the former dean of The Friars Club and a staple of the Catskills comedy scene, has died. He was 85. Roman died Saturday afternoon at Bethesda Hospital in Boynton Beach, Florida, his booking agent and friend Alison Chaplin said Sunday. His daughter told the entertainment trade Deadline that he suffered a heart […]
19 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Quantum Fiber

Stream 4K and more with powerful, high-speed fiber internet

Picking which streaming services to subscribe to are difficult choices, and there is no room for internet that cannot handle increased demands.
...
Quantum Fiber

How high-speed fiber internet can improve everyday life

Quantum Fiber supplies unlimited data with speeds up to 940 mbps, enough to share 4K videos with coworkers 20 times faster than a cable.
...
SCHWARTZ LASER EYE CENTER

Key dates for Arizona sports fans to look forward to this fall

Fall brings new beginnings in different ways for Arizona’s professional sports teams like the Cardinals and Coyotes.
US offers up to $5 million for info on North Korean shipper