Huawei now under criminal investigation over Iran trade

26 April 2018, 06:44 | Isaac Mcdaniel

ZTE says US ban will 'severely impact' its survival and partnerships

ZTE smart phone

USA prosecutors in NY have been investigating whether Chinese tech company Huawei violated US sanctions in relation to Iran, according to sources familiar with the situation.

Authorities have subpoenaed Huawei seeking information related to its alleged shipping of USA -origin products to Iran and other countries in violation of export and sanctions laws, two sources told Reuters.

The U.S. Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control, or OFAC, which enforces sanctions, and the Department of Commerce are also looking into Huawei's transactions.

The U.S. Commerce Department's Bureau of Industry and Security earlier this month banned American companies from selling to ZTE for seven years, saying the Chinese company had broken a settlement agreement with repeated false statements. The new sanction, which banned export of any U.S. hardware or software technology to ZTE, was imposed after the U.S. government determined that the company lied about the steps it took to correct its actions or punish those involved in violating the sanctions.

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The U.S. government's investigation into sanctions violations by ZTE following reports by in 2012 that the company had signed contracts to ship millions of dollars' worth of hardware and software from some of the best-known U.S. technology companies to Iran's largest telecoms carrier. Now, the Wall Street Journal reports the government is taking more direct action against the Chinese technology giant. A Huawei spokesman declined to comment.

The government's order, which went into effect immediately, bans American firms from exporting components directly to ZTE or through a third country until March 13, 2025.

Issues and warnings against Huawei have come from presumptions that the company has ties to the Chinese government. After all, Huawei has been in the USA government's cross hair perhaps longer than ZTE. Both Huawei, which is the third largest smartphone manufacturer in the world, and ZTE, deny that they are a national security threat to the U.S.

Huawei maintains research and development facilities in Texas, New Jersey, California and four other US states, all of which provide technology for Huawei's global operations.



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