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4/17/2003

Boulder firm settles Iran charges

The Associated Press

BOULDER — A Boulder company is among dozens that have settled with the government after being accused of trading or doing business with countries such as Iran, Iraq, Sudan and Cuba, officials say.

The information is from the U.S. Treasury, which said it’s offering information on such settlements in an effort to inform the public about corporate dealings.

The government keeps a list and details on sanctions against several countries and groups it deems terrorists, are engaged in the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction or are at odds with U.S. foreign policy.

Companies that cross those sanctions pay penalties in the tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars. And starting this month, those penalties are made public.

Sanctions on different countries and groups vary. Some are longstanding, such as those against trade with Cuba and Libya. Some are newer, such as those against the Taliban and an enormous list of labeled terrorists and groups including Osama bin Laden and Abu Sayyaf.

A spokesman with the U.S. Treasury said there has been a lot of public interest in companies that pay those settlements.

The April lists are unusually long because they are the first that include companies that have been caught or have turned themselves in since last fall.

“This is a new initiative. OFAC wanted to make this more available and more transparent to the public,” said Taylor Griffin, a treasury spokesman.

According to the OFAC list, Boulder-based Carrier Access exported goods or services to Iran. Carrier Access, which makes telecommunications equipment, was the only Colorado firm on this month’s lists.

According to OFAC, unless a special arrangement is made, goods, technology and services cannot be exported from the United States to Iran or its government.

OFAC said Carrier Access voluntarily disclosed the situation and paid a civil penalty of $13,000.

“We caught it and self-disclosed,” said Mark Nixon, vice president of marketing.