May 26, 1998


The Treasury Department announced today it had added the names of fronts for two of Colombia's leading drug traffickers to the department's list of Specially Designated Narcotics Traffickers (SDNT), a list designed to apply ecomonic sanctions against the Colombian cartels. This represents the first expansion of Treasury's SDNT list to reach beyond the Cali cartel.

The names of one of the leaders of Colombia's North Coast cartel, Julio Cesar Nasser David, and 14 businesses and 4 associated individuals that Treasury has determined are acting as fronts for the North Coast cartel's Julio Cesar Nasser David organization were added to the SDNT list. The Treasury Department also named 7 businesses and one individual that it has determined are acting as fronts for the Cali cartel.

"Today's action against the fronts of the Colombian narcotraffickers sends a clear message that corporate sleight-of-hand will not enable the cartels' businesses to escape U.S. sanctions," said Treasury Under Secretary for Enforcement Raymond W. Kelly.

Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control has now begun identifying companies owned or controlled by other Colombian drug cartels, in addition to the Cali cartel, in order to further expose, isolate, and incapacitate the Colombian drug cartels and their agents by prohibiting Americans from doing business with SDNTs and freezing their assets found within U.S. jurisdiction.

This action is part of the ongoing interagency effort to carry out President's Clinton's Executive Order 12978, signed on October 21, 1995, which applies economic sanctions against the Colombian drug cartels. The 27 names released today have been added to the previous SDNT list, bringing to a total of 451 the number of businesses and individuals with whom financial and business dealings are prohibited and whose assets are blocked under the 1995 Executive Order. The list of 451 SDNTs includes the four Cali cartel drug kingpins named in the Executive Order, the significant North Coast narcotics trafficker, Julio Cesar Nasser David, and 446 other SDNTs that have been determined to be owned or controlled by, or to act for or on behalf of persons designated in or pursuant to the Order.

The 21 newly-named companies include real estate firms, several hotel and restaurant service companies, construction companies, and a clinic which have been determined to be owned or controlled by persons designated in or pursuant to the Order.

Today's action by Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) was taken in coordination with the Justice and State Departments. The list of businesses and individuals named by Treasury today as SDNTs is available electronically from OFAC. It will be published in the Federal Register later this week.