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Cyprus involved in alleged illegal export of sophisticated avionics equipment to Russia by US citizens

Even after Moscow’s invasion in Ukraine two U.S. Citizens arrested 10 days ago were allegedly illegally exporting sophisticated avionics equipment to Russian companies servicing Russian-Built Aircraft.

And the alleged illegal export to Russia was carrying out through Cyprus and Armenia without obtaining the required licenses, according to an announcement by the US Department of Justice.

Philenews has spotted at least 11 references to Cyprus in the indictment, according to which Cyril Gregory Buyanovsky, 59, and Douglas Robertson, 55, both from Kansas, owned and operated KanRus Trading Company.

This company supplied Western avionics equipment (i.e., electronics installed in aircraft) to Russian companies and provided repair services for equipment used in Russian-manufactured aircraft.

Since 2020, the defendants conspired to evade U.S. export laws by concealing and misstating the true end users, value and end destinations of their exports and by transshipping items through third-party countries, according to the indictment.

In summary, the references to Cyprus are the following:

⦁ On 26/4/2022, an executive director of a Russian airline cancelled a Russia-Cyprus flight scheduled for 14/5/2022.

⦁ On 16/5/2022, Biyanovsky ordered seven systems on behalf of the above person. For these, permission from the Nicosia-based Ministry of Commerce was required.

⦁ Around 20/5/2022, the same executive director of the Russian company made a payment via a Cypriot bank account to the KanRus account. Robetson arranged the export using a Cypriot residential address. He failed to complete the required documentation for the export. He then e-mailed the invoice to the Russian company official. The latter received the package in Cyprus on 26/5. And on 28/5 he returned by air to Russia.

The defendants are charged with conspiracy, exporting controlled goods without a license, falsifying and failing to file electronic export information, and smuggling goods contrary to U.S. law.

If convicted, they face a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison for each count of exporting controlled goods without a license; up to 10 years in prison for each count of smuggling; and up to five years in prison for each count of conspiracy and falsifying export information.

A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

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