The Trump administration eased sanctions on an Israeli mining tycoon in the days before President Biden’s inauguration.
Restrictions on Dan Gertler over alleged corruption in the Democratic Republic of the Congo were temporarily lifted by the US Treasury. The decision was not publicly announced.
Mr Gertler’s lawyers were notified of the move on January 15, according to a letter obtained by The Sentry, an American anti-corruption group, and first reported by Reuters. Donald Trump left the White House on January 20.
The United States imposed sanctions on Mr Gertler, 47, in December 2017, alleging that he had “amassed his fortune through hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of opaque and corrupt mining and oil deals” in Congo. Officials went further the following year, targeting more than a dozen companies that they said had worked with him.
Mr Gertler, who arrived in Congo in his early twenties, constructed a vast network of interests in mining projects across the central African country over the ensuing decades. The US Treasury had claimed that a friendship with Joseph Kabila, the former Congolese president, had enabled Mr Gertler to “act as a middleman”in corrupt deals between the government and companies.
By Callum Jones, , January 26, 2021, published on The Times