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US Designates Two Companies Over Links to Russia’s Wagner Group

US Designates Two Companies Over Links to Russia's Wagner Group

The U.S. Department of the Treasury has sanctioned Russian company Broker Expert and Central African Republic-based Wood International Group for supporting the Wagner Group, a Russian state-funded private military company.

According to the department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control, the Wagner Group has launched actions threatening the peace, security, stability, sovereignty, or territorial integrity of Ukraine. The agency designated the military company as a transnational criminal organization in January 2023 for supporting Russia’s military aggression against Kyiv. Reuters reported that Wagner transported weapons from North Korea to boost Moscow’s forces in Ukraine.

OFAC said Wood International Group, previously known as Bois Rouge, was listed for seeking monetary gain from natural resource extraction enabled by Wagner. The entity secured a timber permit in early 2021 and exported tropical timber species to various countries, taking advantage of the mercenary group’s control of Central African Republic areas previously held by rebels.

Broker Expert was designated for exporting goods to Wagner and other companies associated with the mercenary group, including Bois Rouge and Meroe Gold in Sudan. The Treasury said Wagner used Broker Expert to move money and fund illicit activities.

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