UNITED STATES NEWS

US says it’s taken possession of a Boeing 747 that Iran illegally sold to a Venezuelan firm

Feb 12, 2024, 9:38 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. government has seized a Boeing 747 cargo plane that officials say was previously sold by a sanctioned Iranian airline to a state-owned Venezuelan firm in violation of American export control laws.

The Justice Department said Monday that the American-built plane had arrived in Florida and would be disposed of.

The plane had earlier been transferred from Iranian airline Mahan Air — which officials have alleged provides support for Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Quds Force — to Emtrasur, a Venezuelan cargo airline and subsidiary of a state-owned firm that had previously been sanctioned by the United State. Officials said the sale, done without U.S. government authorization, violated export control laws and also improperly benefited Iran’s paramilitary Revolutionary Guard.

Mahan Air has for years been subject to U.S. government restrictions on its business.

“The Justice Department is committed to ensuring that the full force of U.S. laws deny hostile state actors the means to engage in malign activities that threaten our national security,” Assistant Attorney General Matthew Olsen, the head of the department’s national security division, said in a statement.

The plane was detained in June 2022 by Argentine law enforcement, and U.S. officials moved several weeks later to take possession of it. Argentina officially transferred custody of the plane to the U.S. on Sunday, officials said.

The Justice Department said the plane would now be “prepared for disposition,” though it did not elaborate.

The Justice Department has identified the registered captain of the plane as an ex-commander for the Revolutionary Guard. Officials also cited a flight log they say was recovered that shows additional flights after the transfer to Emtrasur to locations including Moscow, Caracas and Tehran — all without U.S. government approval.

Mahan Air has denied any ties to the aircraft, and Venezuela has demanded that Argentine authorities release the plane.

On Sunday, members of a Venezuelan-led, left-leaning alliance condemned Argentina for its role in the plane being seized by the U.S., characterizing the actions as “theft.” The Bolivarian Alliance of the Peoples of Our America — Peoples’ Trade Treaty argued that the actions violate international law.

“This aggression is another consequence of the unilateral coercive measures imposed by the government of the United States that threaten the sovereignty of Venezuela and violate the fundamental principles of the United Nations Charter and International Law,” the group, commonly known as the Alba Alliance, said in a statement.

The alliance was created in 2004 by Venezuela and Cuba in a bid to counter U.S. influence in the region. Nicaragua, Bolivia and some Caribbean nations are among its current members.

____

Associated Press writer Regina Garcia Cano in Caracas contributed to this report.

United States News

FILE - Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón speaks during a news conference Feb. 22,...

Associated Press

Los Angeles County district attorney seeks reelection in contest focused on feeling of public safety

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Los Angeles County voters are set to decide next month if embattled District Attorney George Gascón will remain the head of the nation’s largest prosecutor’s office in a race centered on perceptions of public safety. Gascón, who was elected in 2020 on a criminal justice platform alongside a wave of progressive […]

3 hours ago

In combo of undated selfie images provided courtesy of the Dime Doe family, show Dime Doe, a Black ...

Associated Press

A love affair unraveled before a Black transgender woman was fatally shot in rural South Carolina

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A Black transgender woman and the guy she was secretly dating had just been pulled over in rural South Carolina. Dime Doe, the driver, was worried. She already had points against her license and didn’t want another ticket to stop her from getting behind the wheel. Daqua Lameek Ritter, whom she […]

3 hours ago

Associated Press

Remains found over 50 years ago identified through DNA technology as Oregon teen

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The remains of a teenager found more than 50 years ago have been identified through advanced DNA technology as a young woman who went missing from Portland, Oregon State Police said. The remains are that of Sandra Young, a high school student who disappeared in 1968 or 1969, police said Thursday […]

5 hours ago

Associated Press

California man arrested for making threats against election official in Arizona after 2022 vote

SAN DIEGO (AP) — A San Diego man was arrested Thursday on suspicion of leaving threatening messages on the personal cellphone of an Arizona election worker he accused of rigging the 2022 election results, federal prosecutors said. The 52-year-old was charged with one count of communicating an interstate threat and will make an initial court […]

6 hours ago

Associated Press

Two more candidates file papers to run for U.S. Senate in Pennsylvania

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Two more candidates filed paperwork Thursday to appear on Pennsylvania’s primary ballots for U.S. Senate as Democratic Sen. Bob Casey runs for a fourth term and Democrats try to maintain a majority in the narrowly divided chamber. Brandi Tomasetti, a Republican from Lancaster County, and William Parker, a Democrat from Allegheny […]

6 hours ago

Follow @ktar923...

Sponsored Content by Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinics: transforming health care in the valley

Midwestern University, long a fixture of comprehensive health care education in the West Valley, is also a recognized leader in community health care.

Sponsored Articles

...

Collins Comfort Masters

Avoid a potential emergency and get your home’s heating and furnace safety checked

With the weather getting colder throughout the Valley, the best time to make sure your heating is all up to date is now. 

...

Sanderson Ford

The best ways to honor our heroes on Veterans Day and give back to the community

Veterans Day is fast approaching and there's no better way to support our veterans than to donate to the Military Assistance Mission.

...

Canvas Annuity

Interest rates may have peaked. Should you buy a CD, high-yield savings account, or a fixed annuity?

Interest rates are the highest they’ve been in decades, and it looks like the Fed has paused hikes. This may be the best time to lock in rates for long-term, low-risk financial products like fixed annuities.

US says it’s taken possession of a Boeing 747 that Iran illegally sold to a Venezuelan firm