Owners of US-Seized Oil Tankers Deny Ships Were Going to Venezuela

US claims ships were part of Iranian plot to transfer oil to Venezuela

Saying Iran can’t sell oil and Venezuela can’t buy it may be a simple US policy to make, but proving where the oil came from, or where it is going, may be a tougher task, as the owners of four oil tankers are hoping to contest having their ships and cargo seized by the US.

Three companies, including the UAE-based Mobin International, Oman’s Sohar, and Britain’s Oman Fuel, filed lawsuits related to four tankers and their cargo. They say they owned the ships, and that the cargo was never from Iran nor bound to Venezuela, as the US asserts. They add that the US claims have harmed their business.

Instead of evidence, the US just declares the three companies’ guilt, and has seized their respective websites, accusing them of being in league with Iran, which is being contested in the lawsuit. With $40 million and four ships at stake, this is a substantial lawsuit.

The US, for its part, sold the oil to another UAE company, and has let them take the oil to Trinidad for sale. The companies in the lawsuit argue it’s still their oil.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of Antiwar.com.