Amazon is currently under federal investigation following the revelation that the company may have violated U.S. sanctions against Iran and could have sold consumer goods to at least one individual on the government’s terrorism watchlist.
SiliconBeat reports that in their quarterly financial report published on July 28th, Amazon revealed that they had sold approximately $300 worth of goods to an individual on the government’s terrorist watchlist. A separate regulatory filing from February showed another sale of $1300 made to another individual on the list.
The July 28th document appears to show multiple other high-value sales that would violate the Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act and possibly other U.S. sanctions and export-control laws. As a result, the Commerce and Treasury departments are actively investigating Amazon, the Iranian sales, and the customer on the terrorist watch list. If wrongdoing is found on the part of Amazon, the company may face heavy penalties from the Commerce and Treasury departments.
SiliconBeat reports that Amazon did not immediately respond to a request for comment but later stated that they plan to “cooperate fully” with all investigation efforts.
The disclosure from July 28th appears to show that between January 2012 and June 2017, Amazon sold $24,700 worth of “consumer products” to an Iranian embassy, along with around $8,100 in consumer goods to individuals who may have purchased them on behalf of five Iranian embassies. $600 worth of products were also reportedly purchased by individuals that may have been purchasing them for entities controlled or owned by the Iranian government.
In filings from February and April, it was revealed that Amazon reportedly sold goods worth approximately $6,000 to six Iranian embassies. Another $2,400 worth of products were reportedly sold between 2012 and 2016 to a group owned or controlled by Tehran.
Amazon claimed that the items purchased by these groups included “books, other media, apparel, home and kitchen, jewelry, office, toys, health and beauty, consumer electronics, lawn and patio, automotive, and musical instruments.” Amazon stated that they’re currently unable to determine the profit made from these sales and suggested they would no longer be doing business with the Iran-linked cusotmers.
“We do not plan to continue selling to these accounts in the future,” Amazon stated in their filings. “Our review is ongoing and we are enhancing our processes designed to identify transactions associated with individuals and entities covered by the (Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act).”