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Joint FinCEN and BIS alert on attempts to evade export controls

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) and the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) today jointly announced they have issued a joint alert to financial institutions advising them to be vigilant against efforts by individuals or entities to evade BIS export controls implemented in connection with the Russian Federation’s further invasion of Ukraine.

Since February 24, 2022, BIS has implemented a series of stringent export controls that restrict Russia’s access to the technologies and other items that it needs to sustain its illegal war in Ukraine. These controls target Russia’s defense, aerospace, and maritime sectors, and have been expanded to Russia’s oil refining, industrial, and commercial sectors, as well as to luxury goods used by Russian elites. BIS’s controls have also been applied to Belarus for its substantial enabling of Russia’s invasion. Additional information on BIS’s actions is available online.

The alert provides financial institutions with an overview of BIS’s export restrictions to date, a list of certain commodities of concern, and other information they can use and incorporate into their risk-based screening of financial transactions. In addition, it provides select transactional and behavioral red flag indicators of export control evasion, including red flags derived from recent Bank Secrecy Act reporting.

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