United States set to impose sanctions on hundreds of people


In December 2021, the United States sanctioned Angolan billionaire Isabel dos Santos for her involvement in significant corruption, marking the first public US response to years of accusations of wrongdoing. According to a press release issued by the US State Department, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken cited dos Santos, the daughter of Angola’s former longtime autocratic president, Jose Eduardo dos Santos, “for her involvement in significant corruption by misappropriating public funds for her personal benefit”.

Under the designation, which was released on International Anti-Corruption Day, dos Santos and her immediate family are now barred from entering the United States.

“These sanctions will give hope to many Angolans and preempt Angolan officials from using public funds for their own benefit while many still live in extreme poverty, without access to clean water, education and healthcare services,” said Florindo Chivucute, executive director of Washington DC based nonprofit, Friends of Angola, which has advocated for US measures against the billionaire.

Dos Santos ran Angola’s state-owned oil company from 2016 to 2017. She has previously denied wrongdoing, labeling accusations against her a “witch hunt.

Referring to a suite of measures Blinken said, “these complementary actions promote accountability for corrupt actors across the globe to disrupt and deter those who would seek to act with impunity, disregard international standards, and undermine democracy and rule of law.

Meanwhile, a source in Capitol Hill told Blitz that the US authorities are currently scrutinizing “hundreds of allegations” against various individuals who had purchased properties and businesses in the United States with corruption money, and most of these individuals have also laundered hundreds of millions of dollars.

The source said, Biden administration is going to take stern measures against hundreds of individuals from several countries in the world, on allegations of corruption and money laundering. Stricter sanctions will be imposed on the individuals along with anyone having financial connections with them.

“Currently relevant departments of the US authorities are scrutinizing piles of specific allegations against various individuals who had amassed millions of dollars through corruption and kleptocracy”.

It further added that the US State Department and US Treasury Department are running investigations into allegations of corruption and money laundering.

Allegations against Isabel Dos Santos

Powerful Angolan political figures accused of embezzling billions of dollars can now be linked to at least 20 more secretive companies in the United States and other tax havens, exposing new financial hideaways of the impoverished African country’s former ruling elite.

Isabel dos Santos, the daughter of Angola’s former authoritarian president, José Eduardo dos Santos, as well as former senior presidential advisors and generals, Leopoldino Fragoso do Nascimento and Manuel Hélder Vieira Dias Júnior, owned offshore companies and bank accounts in Europe and the Middle East, leaked records from the Pandora Papers investigation show.

Last month, the United States government sanctioned Isabel dos Santos and the two former generals for what it called “significant corruption.” Under the new measures, dos Santos and members of her family cannot enter the United States.

The State Department also barred Nascimento, President dos Santos’ former head of communications, and Dias, a powerful former Angolan general. The US Treasury Department placed Nascimento, Dias and his wife, Luisa de Fatima Giovetty, under economic sanctions.

“Bringing kleptocrats’ shady deals to light is key to defending human rights”, said Karina Carvalho, executive director of Transparency International in Portugal. “Angola is a resource rich country but the majority of its people live in poverty, prevented from accessing health, education and decent life conditions because of people who take the country’s wealth as their own”.


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