Image from Federal Bureau of Investigation

WASHINGTON, UNITED STATES — The United States on Thursday offered $5 million to track down a Singaporean businessman accused of violating sanctions on North Korea, including through oil shipments on a tanker seized last year.

The reward comes as the United States urges strict enforcement of United Nations sanctions on North Korea after it launched a volley of missiles, including one that landed close to South Korea’s waters.

The State Department offered up to $5 million for information on Kwek Kee Seng, blaming him for numerous fuel deliveries to North Korea and ship-to-ship transfers as well as money laundering through front companies.

Federal prosecutors in New York in 2021 issued an arrest warrant for Kwek, a year after one of his oil tankers, the M/T Courageous, was seized by Cambodia on a US request over purported sanctions violations.

Kwek, 62, owns the Swanseas Port Services shipping company in Singapore, a close US ally.

The State Department’s Rewards for Justice program said his exact location was not known and that he has also been identified as being in North Korea, Cambodia, Taiwan and Thailand as well as Cameroon and the tiny Caribbean nation of Saint Kitts and Nevis.

— AFP

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