US offers up to $5 million for info on North Korean shipper
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration is providing a reward of as much as $5 million for details about a Singapore-based businessman already accused by the Justice Division of facilitating gas shipments to North Korea in violation of U.N. sanctions.
Kwek Kee Seng, who directs a delivery company and terminal operations firm, was charged final yr with arranging the deliveries, with prosecutors alleging that he used entrance corporations and false documentation to cover the scheme. Officers say that enterprise helps allow North Korea’s nuclear proliferation packages.
The U.S. authorities seized a tanker ship that was used for the gas deliveries, the two,734-ton M/T Brave, prosecutors have mentioned. One alternate caught on satellite tv for pc imagery confirmed the ship transferring greater than $1.5 million value of oil to a North Korea-flagged ship, the prosecutors mentioned.
Kwek stays at giant regardless of a warrant that has been issued for his arrest.
The State Division on Thursday mentioned it was providing as much as $5 million by means of its Rewards for Justice program. Kwek was additionally amongst a bunch of individuals and companies sanctioned final month by the Treasury Division.
The announcement of a reward got here amid heightened tensions with North Korea, which on Thursday fired at the very least six missiles into the ocean, together with an intercontinental ballistic missile that triggered evacuation warnings and halted trains in northern Japan.
The Biden administration mentioned in response to the launches that it’s prepared to take “all vital measures” to make sure the protection of the American homeland in addition to South Korea and Japan, and warned of unspecified “further prices and penalties” if North Korea detonates a nuclear check system for the primary time since September 2017.
Observe Eric Tucker on Twitter at http://www.twitter/etuckerAP