Businessman jailed for potential WMD exports
HM REVENUE & CUSTOMS
December 12, 2011
A Guildford businessman has been sentenced at the Old Bailey for illegally exporting electrical goods to Iran, which could have been used in the manufacture of weapons of mass destruction (WMD).
HM Revenue & Customs investigators found that Dr Ramin Pouladian-Kari, 45, of Guildford, Surrey, had tried to export electrical switchgear to Iran Tablo Co (ITC), based in Tehran. Under UK law, the components are designated as ‘dual use’, and anyone wanting to export them must apply for a license. Pouladian-Kari knew he needed this license and knowingly failed to apply for one.
Peter Millroy, Assistant Director, HMRC, said:
“Export controls exist for a very good reason: to prevent dangerous items ending up in the hands of hostile regimes. Pouladian-Kari knew he couldn’t legally export these components ITC without a license. He was motivated purely by money and chose to go ahead with the deal. HMRC will identify, investigate and bring to justice anyone attempting to break the law in this way”.
Dr Pouladian-Kari was director of GTC Associates, a Surrey-based supplier company which was set up to source and supply components for ITC. He first applied for a license to export similar goods in July 2009; this was refused.
Despite the refusal, and eager not to lose the deal worth more than £135,000, Pouladian-Kari organised for the electrical gear to be sent to Iran. UK Border Agency officials intercepted the goods before they left the UK.
Pouladian-Kari was arrested and questioned, where he tried to deceive HMRC officers into believing the goods were actually being sent to the United Arab Emirates.
Confiscation proceedings are underway.
Notes for editors
1. Details of the defendant: Ramin Pouladian-Kari, DOB 10/07/1966, of 2 Little Warren Close, Guildford, Surrey, GU4 8PW
2. He was found guilty of being knowingly concerned in the attempted exportation of goods subject to a prohibition or restriction with intent to evade the said prohibition or restriction, contrary to Section 68(2) of the Customs and Excise Management Act 1979 and was sentenced to 12 months in prison, suspended for two years. He was also ordered to undertake 250 hours of unpaid work.