Last Friday, a United States jury convicted two men from Texas for attempting to sell Iranian petroleum, violating sanctions imposed by Washington and engaging in a conspiracy to commit money laundering.
Zhenyu Wang, 42, and Daniel Ray Lane, 42, were found guilty and face a maximum penalty of 45 years in prison. The individuals had planned to purchase petroleum from the Islamic Republic of Iran, to disguise its origins, and then to sell it to a refinery in China, a statement from the U.S. Justice Department said.
“The Justice Department will not tolerate those who would violate U.S. sanctions and imperil our national security for personal profit,” said the head of the U.S. Justice Department’s National Security Division, Matt Olsen, in a public statement.
Lane was president of Stack Royalties, a company based in Texas that sells oil and gas mineral rights to different investment funds and private equity groups.
Lane’s attorney told Reuters that the case was based on undercover government agents offering Lane “millions of dollars in profits” if he took part in the activities after rejecting their approaches initially.
The two individuals were charged, along with several others, in 2020 in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. According to court records, the two co-conspirators have pleaded guilty.