Isabel dos Santos banned from the USA due to ‘significant corruption’
US authorities banned Angolan businesswoman Isabel dos Santos, along with her nuclear family, from entering the country on the grounds that she has been involved in ‘significant corruption’, according to a statement from Antony Blinken, Secretary of State
The move, which follows the imposition on Thursday of sanctions on two Angolan generals, means that dos Santos – the daughter of former Angolan president José Eduardo dos Santos – may not travel to the US. However, no economic or judicial sanctions against her have been announced.
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In the US State Department statement, Isabel dos Santos is described as the former president of an Angolan public company who has had an “involvement in significant corruption through the appropriation of public funds for her personal benefit.”
The ban, the statement explains, was made under Section 7031(c) under which “the Secretary will deny entry into the United States of foreign government officials involved in significant corruption and their immediate family members.”
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Earlier, top Angolan generals Leopoldino ‘Dino’ Fragoso do Nascimento and Manuel Helder ‘Kopelipa’ Vieira Dias Júnior were named in a US Treasury Department statement as “former government officials who stole billions of dollars from the Angolan government through embezzlement.” It said that they “conspired with other Angolan individuals and Sam Pa, designated by the Treasury [as a target of sanctions in April 2014] to divert funding intended for infrastructure development projects, including the use of ghost projects.”
The text explains that the pair “are also suspected of having diverted millions of dollars from Angolan infrastructure projects and then using their positions in the Angolan economy to protect themselves from the possibility of criminal charges.”
They are the target of Executive Order 13818, which also covers four entities owned or controlled by Nascimento: Cochan SA, Cochan Holdings LLC, Geni SARL, and Geni Novas Tecnologias SA.
“The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) is also designating [to be subject to sanctions] an entity, Baia Consulting, owned or controlled by Dias Junior, and his wife, Luisa de Fatima Giovetty.”
The sanctions imply that “all assets and interests in the property of the persons” referred to “that are in the United States or in the possession or control of US persons are blocked and must be reported to OFAC,” the note adds.
In addition, “any entities owned, directly or indirectly, 50 percent or more by one or more blocked persons are also blocked” and no assets may be traded or benefit from contributions or supplies of funds, goods or services involving the sanctioned persons.
The two generals were members of the office of the president of Angola when José Eduardo dos Santos was in power, along with his vice-president, Manuel Vicente.