The United States Department of the Treasury imposed sanctions on two employees and three subsidiaries of the Solway Investment group, a Swiss-registered enterprise that has been involved in the Guatemalan mining industry since 2011.
Russian national Dmitry Kudryakov is the head of Solway’s mining operations in Guatemala. He and his colleague, Belarusian national Irina Gennadievna Litviniuk, for many years allegedly bribed politicians, judges, and government officials to advance Russian mining interests.
As a result of their actions in Guatemala, Kudryakov and have been designated pursuant to Executive Order 13818, which builds upon and implements the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act, for having materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or technological aid, goods or services in support of corruption, including the theft of state assets, corruption related to government contracts, or the extraction of natural resources, or bribery.
At the same time, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Asset Control, or OFAC, designated, again pursuant to Executive Order 13818, the three companies registered in Guatemala that are directly or indirectly owned or controlled by Kudryakov: Compania Guatemalteca de Niquel, Compania Procesadora de Niquel, and Mayanique.
“Corruption is a key vector for Russia’s harmful influence,” said the related State Department press announcement. “These designations target an egregious Russian corruption network in order to disrupt its exploitative practices within the Guatemalan mining industry.”
As a result of these designations, all property or interest in property of these individuals under U.S. jurisdiction is blocked, and U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in any transactions with them.
“We stand with the people of Guatemala and support the protection of their country’s natural resources from external exploitation,” said Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson. “We will use our tools to help ensure that corrupt profiteers face consequences for stealing from the Guatemalan people.”