Netherlands – Supreme Court upholds conviction and custodial sentence for ISIS sanctions violation

Further to our earlier post, in late 2021 the Dutch Court of Appeal sentenced an individual to a six month custodial prison term for a number of offences including for making a payment in breach of the EU’s ISIS sanctions.

The Dutch Supreme Court has upheld the convictions for terrorist financing and breaching the Dutch Sanctiewet 1977, but remanded the conviction for money laundering to the Court of Appeal.

The facts relate to the transfer of €471 from an individual to his brother who was in Syria as part of ISIS. The defence sought to argue that the man did not have the required intent to support terrorism, or knowledge that the funds had benefitted ISIS.

As held by the Supreme Court at [2.9]:

“With regard to the violation of the provision of Article 2 of the Sanctions Act 1977, the offense proven under 2, the suspect’s intent does not have to be aimed at non-compliance with the legal regulations referred to in the finding of proof. The suspect’s intention must be aimed at ensuring that the money ends up indirectly with (a) terrorist organization”.

 

Netherlands – four month prison sentence for breach of ISIS sanctions

The Court of Appeal in the Hague has quashed some convictions and upheld others of a suspect charged with terrorist financing and with breaching the EU’s ISIS sanctions.

The underlying actions were the indirect transfer of approximately €4,550 in several tranches to the suspect’s daughter and son-in-law who were then in Syria as part of ISIS.

The Court of Appeal quashed the convictions for terrorist financing saying there was no evidence that that was the suspect’s intention.

The convictions under the EU’s sanctions were, however, upheld with the court noting that intention does not form part of the offence which consists simply of making funds or economic resources available to a designated person.

The defendant was given a four month custodial sentence.

Netherlands – 30 month custodial sentence for breach of ISIS sanctions

The Rotterdam District Court has imposed a 30-month custodial sentence on an individual relating to a two-year period in which financial transfers of approximately $140,000 were made in breach of EU sanctions against ISIS and Al Qaeda.

The transfers were related to efforts to smuggle Dutch women who had travelled to Syria and Iraq to be part of ISIS out of that region and back to the Netherlands.

 

Netherlands – 18 month sentence for exports to Iran

The Dutch Supreme Court has denied an appeal against an 18-month custodial sentence against an individual for his role in  seven exports of goods to the National Iranian Gas Company which is a designated person under the EU’s sanctions.

The shipments were made via Turkey or Dubai and the defence argued in the appeal that this was not “indirectly” making economic resources available to a designated person. The Supreme Court disagreed.

Denmark – sentences and fines for breach of Syrian sanctions

Two Danish companies have been convicted of exporting 177,000 tonnes of jet fuel to Syria in breach of the EU’s sanctions.

In total some 33 transactions took place between 2015 and 2017, with the exports routed through Russian companies bound for Syria.

The company Dan-Bunkering was fined DKK 30 million ($4.6m), with a further DKK 15 million of unlawful profits confiscated.

The parent company Bunker Holding was fined DKK 4 million.

The Dan Bunkering CEO was also convicted and given a four-month custodial sentence , suspended pending a one year probation period.

 

Germany – convictions and fines for Russian exports

Further to our earlier post, it has been reported today that the Higher Regional Court in Hamburg has sentenced two men to prison for supplying machine tools to a Russian arms company.

The first defendant received a sentence of three years and nine months. In addition, almost €8 million in profits from the sale of the machinery will be confiscated

The second defendant was sentenced to two years’ probation for aiding and abetting with a payment of €150,000 to secure that probation. A further €184,000 are to be confiscated.

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The opinions expressed on this blog are those of the author and are not to be construed as legal advice.

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