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 Settlement Agreements between the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control and Expedia Group, Inc.; Hotelbeds USA, Inc.; and Cubasphere, Inc. and an Individual

The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) today announced a $325,406 settlement with Expedia Group, Inc. (“Expedia”).  Expedia, headquartered in Bellevue, Washington, on behalf of itself and its subsidiaries and affiliates worldwide, has agreed to pay $325,406 to settle its potential civil liability for providing Cuba-related travel services in apparent violation of the Cuban Assets Control Regulations, 31 C.F.R. part 515 (CACR).  Specifically, between on or about April 22, 2011 and on or about October 16, 2014, Expedia dealt in property or interests in property of Cuba or Cuban nationals by assisting 2,221 persons — some of whom were Cuban nationals — with travel or travel-related services for travel within Cuba or between Cuba and locations outside the United States.   These transactions appear to have violated § 515.201(b) of the CACR.  OFAC determined that the apparent violations were voluntarily self-disclosed to OFAC and occurred prior to agency notice.  

For more information, please visit the following web notice.

OFAC today separately announced a $222,705 settlement with Hotelbeds USA, Inc. (“Hotelbeds USA”).  Hotelbeds USA, incorporated in Florida, is a U.S. subsidiary of Hotelbeds Group, headquartered in Mallorca, Spain.  Hotelbeds USA has agreed to pay $222,705 to settle its potential civil liability for assisting persons with unauthorized Cuba-related travel services in apparent violation of the CACR.  Specifically, between the approximate dates of December 2011 and June 2014, Hotelbeds USA provided Cuba-related travel services to 703 non-U.S. persons in apparent violation of § 515.201(b) of the CACR.  OFAC determined that the apparent violations were not voluntarily self-disclosed to OFAC and occurred prior to agency notice.   

For more information, please visit the following web notice.

OFAC today also separately announced a $40,320 settlement with an individual (the “Individual”) and Cubasphere, Inc. (“Cubasphere”).  The Individual, as well as Cubasphere, on whose behalf the Individual also acted, have agreed to pay $40,320 to settle their potential civil liability for apparent violations of the CACR.  Specifically, the Individual and Cubasphere dealt in property in which Cuba or Cuban nationals had an interest, in apparent violation of § 515.201(b) of the CACR, by engaging in unauthorized Cuba travel-related transactions by assisting  104 persons on four separate trips to and within Cuba, from on or about December 30, 2013 to on or about February 22, 2014.  OFAC determined that the apparent violations were not voluntarily self-disclosed to OFAC and occurred subsequent to agency notice.

For more information, please visit the following web notice.

OFAC strongly encourages organizations subject to U.S. jurisdiction, as well as foreign entities that conduct business in or with the United States, U.S. persons, or using U.S.-origin goods or services, to review OFAC’s May 2, 2019 “A Framework for OFAC Compliance Commitments​” for more information regarding best practices for developing, implementing, and updating risk-based sanctions compliance programs.    

Last Updated: 6/13/2019 10:32 AM