BIS Nabs Russian Component Dealers

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Commerce's Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) issued a Temporary Denial Order (TDO) against three individuals and four companies implicated in illicitly supplying the Russian military with U.S.-sourced micro-electronics having significant military applications.

The TDO represents a robust form of civil sanction, precluding the concerned parties from any activities associated with U.S. exports as defined under part 764 of the Export Administration Regulations (EAR). Issued for a renewable 180-day period, the order is intended to curb imminent violations of the EAR.

Case Background

The individuals and entities targeted by the TDO are implicated in a procurement network sourcing restricted U.S. micro-electronics for the Russian military, especially components integrated into Russian military hardware used in the ongoing conflict with Ukraine. The network operated through shell companies and complex routing to evade U.S. export controls.

Arthur Petrov is linked with Astrafteros Technokosmos LTD, a Cyprus-registered shell company, and also operates within Electrocom VPK, a Russian military supplier. Zhanna Soldatenkova, residing in Russia, works for Electrocom VPK and uses Ultra Trade Service, a Latvian third-party distributor, for transshipping U.S. electronics to Russia. Ruslan Almetov, another Russian national, serves as the General Director of Electrocom VPK and operates Juzhoi Electronic, a shell company based in Tajikistan.

To execute the scheme, controlled U.S. microelectronics were procured through various channels, including Petrov's Astrafteros, and then transshipped through third-country entities. In total, the network acquired and sent over $225,000 worth of controlled U.S. electronics to Russia without ever applying for a U.S. export license.

In parallel, Arthur Petrov is also facing criminal charges for export control violations, smuggling, wire fraud, and money laundering, filed by the U.S. Department of Justice in the Southern District of New York. Petrov was arrested in Cyprus on August 26, 2023, and is currently in custody pending extradition proceedings.

The move is coordinated by the Disruptive Technology Strike Force, a joint initiative led by the U.S. Departments of Justice and Commerce.