February 24, 2015 | Quote

Exclusive: Iran Smuggles in $1 Billion of Bank Notes to Skirt Sanctions – Sources

A report last year by the U.N. Security Council's Panel of Experts on Iran said Iran had used cash and money changers to help get around banking restrictions.

“The Panel continues to receive information from states and financial institutions that Iranian companies could operate through trading companies or shell companies in neighboring states,” the U.N. report said.

U.S. Executive Order 13622, which came into effect in 2012, prohibits the purchase or acquisition of U.S. bank notes by the government of Iran.

Jonathan Schanzer, a former terrorism finance analyst at the U.S. Treasury, said Iran had been starved of dollars and euros.

“It has been a constant battle behind the scenes for Iran to get their hands on these hard currencies,” said Schanzer, now with Washington think tank the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

Iran says the sanctions are illegal and has vowed to sidestep them.

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