Sony Corp. (6758) sold almost $13 million in video and medical equipment to dealers in Dubai that resold the gear in Iran, the company said. The recipients included groups under U.S. sanctions.
In a U.S. filing yesterday, Sony said it sold broadcast equipment, security cameras and video-conferencing gear to dealers who planned to resell or resold the products to groups including the Information Technology Department of the Iranian Police and the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting.
The law allows the U.S. to seek fines against suppliers of products used to oppress people in Iran. Sony's dealings were outlined under requirements that businesses report transactions with Iran or others sanctioned under programs relating to terrorism or the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, according to the Tokyo-based electronics maker's filing.
"International companies that sell equipment to designated Iranian entities like IRIB run the risk of U.S. sanctions as well as the moral opprobrium from aiding the regime's repression of the Iran people," said Mark Dubowitz, executive director of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, a Washington-based group that researches international terrorism.
Sony "believes that, and maintains policies and procedures designed to ensure that, its transactions with Iran and elsewhere have been conducted in accordance with applicable economic sanctions laws and regulations," according to the filing. Penalties or sanctions taken against the company could be material if any government disagrees, Sony said.