Canadian Manufacturing

U.S. jury convicts man of exporting industrial goods to Iran

Ali Saboonchi, 34, found guilty of conspiring to export products to Iran in violation of U.S. trade embargo

GREENBELT, Md.—A Maryland man has been convicted on charges of exporting American manufactured industrial products to Iran.

Prosecutors said a federal grand jury convicted 34-year-old Ali Saboonchi after a two-week trial.

Saboonchi conspired with others to export products to Iran in violation of a United States trade embargo, the case against him alleged.

Prosecutors say the goods included stainless steel filter elements, which are used primarily in the oil and gas industry, as well as liquid pumps and valves and other industrial parts.

Saboonchi faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison for conspiracy and on each of seven additional counts for illegal export to an embargoed country.

Sentencing was set for Feb. 2.

Telephone messages for attorneys representing Saboonchi were not immediately returned.

The verdict in Saboonchi’s case comes less than four months after an Alberta company pleaded guilty to shipping synthetic rubber O-rings that can be used in oil production, but also in nuclear programs, to Iran.

Lee Specialties Ltd. of Red Deer, Alta., was fined $90,000 after pleading guilty to one charge under the Special Economic Measures Act.

The company maintained the O-rings were destined for Dubai, but were shipped to an address in Iran accidentally.

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