Two major travel groups have agreed settlements with the US Treasury for “apparent violation” of US sanctions on Cuba.
Expedia Group has agreed to pay just over $325,000 to settle a potential civil liability for “providing Cuba-related travel services” between 2011 and 2014 in breach of the US Federal Cuban Assets Control Regulations.
Hotelbeds USA, a subsidiary of Mallorca-based accommodation provider Hotelbeds Group, agreed to pay almost $223,000 for potential violations of the same regulations between late 2011 and mid-2014.
In announcing the settlements, the US Treasury Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) noted that Expedia “has committed to enhancing its compliance procedures” including “ongoing sanctions compliance training throughout the Expedia corporate family”.
Expedia has also “increased its resources dedicated to compliance with US sanctions”.
OFAC similarly noted Hotelbeds “took significant remedial action in response to the apparent violations”.
The office warned US companies and foreign parents of US subsidiaries “engaging in Cuba travel-related transactions” to “take note of and respond to sanctions-related warning signs”.
The settlements pre-date the recent US administration toughening of the sanctions’ regime against Cuba.
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