The US imposed new sanctions, on Wednesday, June 12th, on Iran-affiliated South Wealth Resources Company (SWRC), and two of its associates, for smuggling hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of weapons into neighbouring countries.
The company was said to be operating under the full control of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard-Quds force; the latter is known to be using Iraqi financial channels to evade sanctions and questioning over shady activities.
"Treasury is taking action to shut down Iranian weapons smuggling networks that have been used to arm regional proxies of the IRGC Qods Force in Iraq, while personally enriching regime insiders," Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement.
The controversial company had the role of supporting the previously sanctioned Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, an Iraqi advisor to IRGC-QF Commander Qase Soleimani, involved in weapons trafficking, bombings of Western embassies and multiple assassinations in the region.
"The Iraqi financial sector and the broader international financial system must harden their defenses against the continued deceptive tactics emanating from Tehran in order to avoid complicity in the IRGC’s ongoing sanctions evasion schemes and other malign activities," Mnuchin added.
The IRGC has been known for its logistic support for outlawed militias such as the armed Houthi militias in Yemen and the terrorist group of Hezbollah in Lebanon.
Wednesday's sanctions targeted Baghdad-based South Wealth Resources Company, the statement said. Two of the entity's associates, who the statement said helped facilitate weapons shipments and the company's financial operations, were also sanctioned, it said.
Washington sanctioned back in April Iran’s elite IRGC, designating it a terrorist organisation.