Japanese trio charged

Three members of a Japanese shipping agency have been arrested after allegedly falling foul of sanctions against Iranian state shipowner Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL).

The trio, who work for Ben Line Agencies, deny making payments to a Singapore-based affiliate of the company, Japanese media reports.

The two men and a woman are accused of transferring a total of JPY 14m ($158,000) in November 2011 and February 2012 without government approval.

Such payments are illegal under sanctions introduced by Japan in September 2010 over the Middle Eastern country’s nuclear programme.

This is the first time a criminal case has been opened for alleged violation of Japanese sanctions.

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