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Friday, February 24, 2017

Eleven Individuals and One Company Charged in Florida With Exporting Prohibited Articles to Syria



Ali Caby, a/k/a “Alex Caby,” 40, a U.S. permanent resident currently residing in Bulgaria; Arash Caby, a/k/a “Axel Caby,” 43, of Miami, Florida; and Marjan Caby, 34, of Miami, Florida, were arrested and charged with exporting prohibited articles to Syria, in violation of the Syria trade embargo, commerce regulations and a U.S. Department of Treasury designation based on an Indictment charging eleven individuals and one foreign company. The defendants were charged by indictment for their alleged participation in a conspiracy to violate the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA), the Export Administration Regulations (EAR), and the Global Terrorism Sanctions Regulations by exporting dual-use goods, that is, articles that have both civilian and military application. The dual-use goods were exported to Syrian Arab Airlines, the Syrian government’s airline, which is an entity designated and blocked by the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control for transporting weapons and ammunition to Syria in conjunction with Hizballah, a terrorist organization, and the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). Also charged in the indictment were Adib Zeno, Rizk Ali, Ammar Al Mounajed, Zhelyaz Andreev, Mihaela Nenova, Lyubka Hristova, Iskren Georgiev, Ivan Sergiev, and Syrian Arab Airlines, a/k/a “Syrian Air.”

The announcement was made by Acting Assistant Attorney General for National Security Mary B. McCord, U.S. Attorney Wifredo A. Ferrer for the Southern District of Florida, Special Agent in Charge George L. Piro of the FBI’s Miami Field Office, Special Agent in Charge Robert Luzzi of the Department of Commerce’s Office of Export Enforcement (DOC) Miami Field Office and Special Agent in Charge Mark Selby of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (ICE-HSI).

Specifically, the defendants are charged with: conspiracy to violate to IEEPA and to defraud the U.S. Government, in violation of Title 18, U.S. Code, Section 371; substantive violations of IEEPA and the EAR, specifically Title 15, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 746.9(a), regarding the Syrian Embargo; smuggling goods from the U.S., in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 554(a); submitting false or misleading export information, in violation of Title 13, U.S. Code, Section 305; conspiracy to commit money laundering, in violation of Title 18, U.S. Code, Section1956 (h); and false statements, in violation of Title 18, U.S. Code, Section 1001.

According to court documents, Ali Caby ran the Bulgaria office of AW-Tronics, a Miami, Florida export company that was managed by Arash Caby, and which shipped and exported various aircraft parts and equipment to Syrian Arab Airlines. Marjan Caby, AW-Tronics’ export compliance officer and auditor, facilitated these exports by submitting false and misleading electronic export information to federal agencies. All three defendants closely supervised and encouraged subordinate employees of AW-Tronics in the willful exportation of the parts and equipment to Syrian Arab Airlines, whose activities have assisted the Syrian government’s violent crackdown on its people.

An indictment is a formal charging document notifying the defendant of the criminal charges. All persons charged in an indictment are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the FBI, DOC, ICE-HSI, Defense Criminal Investigative Service and U.S. Customs and Border Protection. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ricardo Del Toro of the Southern District of Florida and Trial Attorney Matthew Walczewski of the Counterintelligence and Export Control Section of the Department of Justice’s National Security Division.

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