Friday, March 21, 2008

Iran - telecom trade embargo

Company's plan for Iran trade brings guilty plea

Allied Telesis Labs, a telecommunications research company with offices on NC State's Centennial Campus, entered a guilty plea today to conspiring to trade illegally with Iran.

According to a federal court press release, the company conspired to land and carry out a $95 million contract to rebuild telecommunications systems in Iranian cities including Teheran. The guilty plea followed a written plea agreement and required the defendant to pay a fine of $500,000.

The plea came in federal court in Raleigh to charges of conspiracy to violate the International Emergency Powers Act, federal court officials said.

Attorneys for Allied did not comment during the hearing, but said in a news release that the employees involved in the conspiracy have been fired.

According to the court's news release, the company designed telecommunication equipment and systems including high-capacity "multiservice access platforms," known as iMAPs, and related items that could route a large volume of messages/information/data.

The plea acknowledged that the corporation conspired with another to trade with Iran in violation of the law.

"The iMAPS developed in the Triangle were to be a central component of this system," the news release said. "Preparation for the execution of the contract went as far as the manufacture of approximately $2 million worth of iMAPS at ... facilities in Singapore.

"The contract negotiations eventually collapsed, the telecommunications system was not installed and the iMAPs were sold elsewhere at a loss."

The company, formerly known as Allied Telesyn Network is a subsidiary of Washington State-based Allied Telesis, Inc., itself a subsidiary of Allied Telesis Kabushi Kaisha, a Tokyo-based global holding company.

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