A District of Columbia Court Tuesday filed a request before Argentine authorities to confiscate the Venezuelan-Iranian Boeing 747-300 freighter aircraft grounded at Buenos Aires' Ezeiza international airport, it was reported.
The aircraft, currently under Venezuelan registration, used to fly for Iran's Mahan Air and is linked to international terrorism logistics.
The United States argues that Mahan Air selling the airplane to Venezuela's Emtrasur circumvented the Department of Commerce's sanctions.
The US-built aircraft and its 19 crewmembers were held in Buenos Aires since June 8 when it was unable to refuel and was denied access into Uruguayan airspace for that purpose so it was forced to return to Ezeiza.
Last week, the five remaining crewmembers were released by Argentine Federal Judge Federico Villena citing a lack of evidence of any wrongdoing.
The aircraft is owned by Emtrasur - a subsidiary of Venezuela's flag carrier Conviasa.
Last week, Washington asked for the termination of the Venezuelan YV-3531 registration, which would allow the seizure of the aircraft. The measure was granted by the DC Court and is yet to be notified to Argentine authorities, it was reported.
”The Iranian airline Mahan Air, also known as Mahan Airlines and Mahan Airways (Mahan Air), made a transfer of the Boeing to the Venezuelan airline Empresa de Transporte Aérocargo del Sur, S. A. EMTRASUR) and, thereafter, EMTRASUR re-exported the Boeing to destinations including Iran and Russia, all in violation of U.S. law, specifically the Export Control Reform Act (hereinafter ECRA) of 2018, section 4801 et seq. of title 50, United States Code,” reads the cooperation request Argentina received in August.
The documents also targeted any other party helping Mahan Air engage in any export transactions.