National Oilwell Varco, Inc., a Delaware corporation, and its Canadian subsidiaries, Dreco Energy Services, Ltd (Dreco) and NOV Elmar (NOV) have agreed to pay a combined $25 Million for violations of the Cuban Assets Control Regulations, the Iranian Transactions and Sanctions Regulations, and the Sudanese Sanctions Regulations.
The charges are as follows:
- Between 2002 and 2005, National Oilwell Varco approved four Dreco commission payments to a UK based entity related to the sale and exportation of goods from Dreco to Iran. The four commission payments had a combined value of $2,630,091.
- Between 2006 and 2008 National Oilwell Varco was involved in two transactions involving the sale and exportation of goods to Iran that totaled $13,596,980.
- Between 2003 and 2007, Dreco knowingly exported (indirectly) goods from the US to fill seven orders from Iranian customers. The transactions totaled $526,480.
- During 2007 and 2009, Dreco engaged in 45 transactions involving the sale of goods to Cuba totaling $1,707,964.
- NOV engaged in two transactions between 2007 and 2008 involving the sale of goods or services to Cuba that totaled $103,119.
- Finally, between 2005 and 2006 NOV engaged is a $20,928 transaction involving the exportation of goods from the US to Sudan.
OFAC considered the violations to be egregious since senior-level executives approved the commission payments and the NOV “willfully blinded” itself of the regulation violations by continuing to approve payments and communications. NOV will pay OFAC a settlement of $5,976,028, this will be deemed satisfied with its payment of $25,000,000 in relation to its settlement agreement between OFAC, BIS, and a Non-Prosecution Agreement (NPA).
OFAC considered the following to be aggravating factors:
- NOV’s conduct that gave rise to the Apparent Violations demonstrated at least reckless disregard for U.S. sanctions requirements;
- Senior managers at National Oilwell Varco, Inc. and Dreco knew or had reason to know that their respective business transactions giving rise to the ITSR-related apparent violations involved Iran;
- NOV’s conduct caused harm to sanctions program objectives by providing a significant and sustained economic benefit to the petroleum industries in Cuba, Iran, and Sudan;
- NOV is a large and sophisticated company that is engaged in the business of providing oilfield services around the world, including regions with high sanctions risk; and
- NOV’s compliance program at the time of the Apparent Violations was wholly inadequate.
OFAC considered the following to be mitigating factors:
- NOV had not received a Penalty Notice or Finding of Violation in the five years preceding the date of the earliest transaction giving rise to the Apparent Violations;
- NOV cooperated with OFAC’s investigation, including by agreeing to toll the statute of limitations for more than 2,600 days; and
- NOV has made efforts to remediate its compliance program and agreed to further compliance enhancements.