The US Justice Department has issued a warrant to seize a detained Iranian oil tanker, a day after a judge in Gibraltar ordered it to be released, BBC News reported.
Washington claims it can seize the Grace 1 supertanker, and all of the oil on board, based on alleged violations of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, bank fraud, money laundering, and terrorism statutes.
It has also ordered $995,000 to be seized from an account at an unnamed US bank linked to Paradise Global Trading LLC, which the US claims is associated with businesses that act for Iran’s Revolutionary Guards.
Gibraltar’s government had said it had received assurances from Iran that Grace 1 would not sail to countries “subject to European Union sanctions”—that is, Syria.
The British territory’s chief minister Fabian Picardo added: “We have deprived the Assad regime in Syria of more than $140m worth of crude oil.”