US Treasury Department Designated Alleged Iranian Counterfeit Cash Operation Funding Revolutionary Guards

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US Treasury Department Designated Alleged Iranian Counterfeit Cash Operation Funding Revolutionary Guards

FILE – In this March 27, 2015 file photo released by the official website of the office of the Iranian supreme leader, commander of Iran’s Quds Force, Qassem Soleimani, right, greets Supreme Leader Ay Undredited/AP

The US Treasury Department designated on November 20 an Iranian network that has procured “advanced equipment and materials to print counterfeit Yemeni banknotes potentially worth hundreds of millions of dollars” for the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ (IRGC) Qods Force in order to supply them with counterfeit currency. One of the four branches of the IRGC, the Qods Force is in charge of external operations.

“This scheme exposes the deep levels of deception the IRGC-Qods Force is willing to employ against companies in Europe, governments in the Gulf, and the rest of the world to support its destabilizing activities.  Counterfeiting strikes at the heart of the international financial system, and the fact that elements of the government of Iran are involved in this behavior is completely unacceptable,” said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.  “This counterfeiting scheme exposes the serious risks faced by anyone doing business with Iran, as the IRGC continues to obscure its involvement in Iran’s economy and hide behind the façade of legitimate businesses to perpetrate its nefarious objectives.”

The US has sanctioned two Iranian nationals and four German and Iran-based companies. Reza Heidari, 40, used two German front companies to “deceive European suppliers, circumvent export restrictions, and acquire advanced printing machinery, security printing machinery, and raw materials” to support the Qods Force’s counterfeit capabilities. As of late 2016, he has been the managing director of Iran-based Rayan Printing. Heidari coordinated with Mahmoud Seif, in his 50s, who has been involved with the logistics of importing the material to Iran. Seif is the managing director of Tejarat Almas Mobin, the parent company of Rayan Printing. He previously ran guns for the Qods Force, according to Treasury.

The individuals and companies are designated for terrorism pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 13224, as well as for acting as agents of the IRGC pursuant to the Iranian Financial Sanctions Regulation. As a result, they are added to the Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons List (SDN); anyone that does business with these entities is at risk of fines and being blocked from the US financial system.

The United States has formally added Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) to its anti terrorism sanctions list on October 13 “for providing support to a number of terrorist groups, including Hizballah and Hamas, as well as to the Taliban.” The Treasury Department statement emphasized that the development did not mean that the United States has designated the IRGC as a foreign terrorist organization.

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  • Vitex

    The money that comes from the US Fed is counterfeit anyway. It is worthless paper, backed by nothing. So let’s not point fingers.

  • Vitex

    When is the US government going to institute sanctions against itself as the largest terrorist organization in the world?

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      • You can call me Al

        P1ss off.

  • Mortal

    The criminal boss “Federal Reserve” imposes sanctions to countries hosting semi terrorist organizations (sic). This world’s taken a turn for the surreal lately. The near future holds a lot of nasty surprises for the globe, mind that.

  • Tan Kelantan

    US Treasury…looks very stupid and ignorance.

  • Garga

    I know this printing company from the first day of it’s establishment, BEFORE installation of it’s first machines. It’s a very large and advanced printing house, specialized in packaging and it’s the only printing house in Iran that produces holograms and has the ability to print “some” security documents, like stamps and cigarette box labels (tax and import permits).

    BUT

    Printing banknotes is something entirely different. The first problem a money counterfeiter must solve is the banknote paper. It’s not an ordinary paper and all kinds of security measures are embedded in the paper, the most obvious one is the ribbon (which can be hologram or nano-printed). There are few paper mills that produce such papers and every single banknote’s paper is traceable, to the batch number of the paper, meaning the manufacturing date and therefore the supervisor and all kinds of info is clear.

    That’s the first part of the US bull-crap.

    The next problem is the design, which I admit is not very difficult to reproduce to look almost the same, if you have the right tools. The final result may be very close to the original, but it’s impossible to replicate the exact indistinguishable copy because they haven’t got the original file (security print design softwares used in banknote design employ mathematical equations to generate patterns, you can’t simply replicate them by looking at them, even under a microscope).

    The third issue is the printing process and the inks. Inks are traceable too (limited number of security ink manufactures) and banknote printing requires additional special types of machine (intaglio) and special kind of plates.In any case, the composition and even the “feel” of paper and inks in counterfeits will also be different.

    Let’s assume they had the paper, had the ink, had the machines and plates and actually produced the notes. Yemeni Rial notes. Now who do they want to hurt? The current guys in charge in Yemen? Yemeni army? An operation for hurting a country’s economy by counterfeiting it’s money requires huge amount of money to enter the cycle. How this money entered Yemen? By road? Sea? Air?

    The same operations actually took place against Iran during Ahmadinejad’s presidency. The result was fall of Iranian Rial to %30 of it’s value (1$US=12.000IRR became 1$US=35.000IRR). Iranian intelligence managed to crack the network but the damage was done.

    I read the US treasury report on this and nowhere could find the samples. Did you see one?

    IF they actually are able to do that, is it logical for them to hurt Yemen who is fighting the Saudis? Is it not better to counterfeit Saudi Rial?

    In this instance too, “Cui Bono” is the center part. Who benefits from hurting Yemeni economy?

    I believe the real issue was the parent company’s (Tejarat Almas) connections in oil trade during the sanctions. Counterfeiting is just a load of nonsense.

    I look forward for US treasury to back their claim with hard evidence, something which is extremely rare from the US and it’s cronies.

  • Garga

    This comment was detected as spam. I’m cutting it into pieces and try to re-post it:

    A

    I know this printing company from the first day of it’s establishment, BEFORE installation of it’s first machines. It’s a very large and advanced printing house, specialized in packaging and it’s the only printing house in Iran that produces holograms and has the ability to print “some” security documents, like stamps and cigarette box labels (tax and import permits).

    BUT

    Printing banknotes is something entirely different. The first problem a money counterfeiter must solve is the banknote paper. It’s not an ordinary paper and all kinds of security measures are embedded in the paper, the most obvious one is the ribbon (which can be hologram or nano-printed). There are few paper mills that produce such papers and every single banknote’s paper is traceable, to the batch number of the paper, meaning the manufacturing date and therefore the supervisor and all kinds of info is clear.

    That’s the first part of the US bull-crap.

    • Garga

      B
      The next problem is the design, which I admit is not very difficult to reproduce to look almost the same, if you have the right tools. The final result may be very close to the original, but it’s impossible to replicate the exact indistinguishable copy because they haven’t got the original file (security print design softwares used in banknote design employ mathematical equations to generate patterns, you can’t simply replicate them by looking at them, even under a microscope).

      The third issue is the printing process and the inks. Inks are traceable too (limited number of security ink manufactures) and banknote printing requires additional special types of machine (intaglio) and special kind of plates.In any case, the composition and even the “feel” of paper and inks in counterfeits will also be different.

      • Garga

        C
        Let’s assume they had the paper, had the ink, had the machines and plates and actually produced the notes. Yemeni Rial notes. Now who do they want to hurt? The current guys in charge in Yemen? Yemeni army? An operation for hurting a country’s economy by counterfeiting it’s money requires huge amount of money to enter the cycle. How this money entered Yemen? By road? Sea? Air?

        The same operations actually took place against Iran during Ahmadinejad’s presidency. The result was fall of Iranian Rial to %30 of it’s value (1$US=12.000IRR became 1$US=35.000IRR). Iranian intelligence managed to crack the network but the damage was done.

        I read the US treasury report on this and nowhere could find the samples. Did you see one?

        • Garga

          D
          IF they actually are able to do that, is it logical for them to hurt Yemen who is fighting the Saudis? Is it not better to counterfeit Saudi Rial?

          In this instance too, “Cui Bono” is the center part. Who benefits from hurting Yemeni economy?

          I believe the real issue was the parent company’s (Tejarat Almas) connections in oil trade during the sanctions. Counterfeiting is just a load of nonsense.

          I look forward for US treasury to back their claim with hard evidence, something which is extremely rare from the US and it’s cronies.

          • Barba_Papa

            Haven’t you heard? Apparently hard evidence is no longer needed. Hasn’t been since the Iraq invasion. Doesn’t matter what you say, journalists now just print it. They are far more busy with that other witchhunt, which also is extremely lacking in providing hard evidence, #metoo.

  • eric zweistein

    Banging ones head against the wall doesn’t achieve anything and hurts like hell, Zion finally realizes. Better to make some makeshift allegations against Iran or someone. Ha ha!