British Businessman Extradited to the U.S. to Face Export Violation Charges

After losing an appeal in British courts, Christopher Tappin was extradited from the U.K. and brought to the U.S. on February 24th. Mr. Tappin, a British businessman, faces charges in connection with a scheme to illegally export parts used in Hawk surface-to-air missile systems to Iran.  On March 5th, a United States federal grand jury indictment was handed down.  Mr. Tappin was charged with one count each for: conspiracy to illegally export defense articles, aiding and abetting the illegal export of defense articles, and conspiracy to conduct illegal financial transactions. If convicted, Mr. Tappin faces up to 20 years in prison.

Mr. Tappin was investigated by The Bureau of Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE), which is an agency within the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.  ICE established a front company for the purpose of detecting potential illegal exports.  U.S. authorities allege that an associate of Mr. Tappin dealt with the front company to purchase items which were then exported to Iran via the Netherlands.

To read more about this case, click here.

This case illustrates the extent to which the U.S. government will go to convict people (and companies) that commit export violations.  It further demonstrates that anyone can be extradited and charged for violations of U.S. export control laws, regardless of their place of residency, and even if there are no equivalent laws in their country of citizenship.

Ensuring compliance with government export rules and regulations is a complex process.  Effectively screening against restricted party lists, determining license requirements, and generating the necessary documentation for a shipment is often a challenge for exporters.

Learn how your company can automate (and simplify) these complex processes.  Check out Amber Road’s Trade Export brochure.

New Trade Enforcement Agency Established

President Obama recently signed an executive order, establishing the Interagency Trade Enforcement Center (ITEC) within the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR).  The Obama administration is aimed at doubling exports by the year 2015, and this new agency will help facilitate that goal.

According to Ron Kirk, Ambassador of USTR, the ITEC is among the most significant commitment of resources and expertise since the establishment of the USTR. The purpose of the Interagency Trade Enforcement Center will be to coordinate U.S. trade rights under international agreements, monitor unfair trade practices, as well as identify and eliminate foreign trade barriers. These tasks will hopefully curb the production of counterfeit and unsafe goods and improve market access for U.S. exporters. The ITEC will also strengthen trade enforcement of intellectual property laws.

Chairman of the House Trade Working Group, Rep. Mike Michaud (D-Maine), said, “Signing this order brings us one more important step closer to the level of trade enforcement we need to counter the predatory practices of countries like China.”

Based on the signed executive order, the mission and function of The Interagency Trade Enforcement Center will be to:

 (a) serve as the primary forum within the Federal Government for USTR and other agencies to coordinate enforcement of U.S. trade rights under international trade agreements and enforcement of domestic trade laws;

(b) coordinate among USTR, other agencies with trade related responsibilities, and the U.S. Intelligence Community the exchange of information related to potential violations of international trade agreements by our foreign trade partners; and

(c) conduct outreach to U.S. workers, businesses, and other interested persons to foster greater participation in the identification and reduction or elimination of foreign trade barriers and unfair foreign trade practices.

Upcoming Trade Compliance Webinar

Join Amber Road on Wednesday, February 22nd at 2:00pm EST, for a complimentary webinar showcasing, a new cloud-based portal that enables companies to classify products, calculate duties and taxes, and screen for restricted parties…for FREE!

During the “ Answers to Your Tough Trade Questions” webinar, industry experts will review the challenges companies are facing when it comes to importing and exporting, and show you how can help combat those challenges.

Speakers will include:
Scott Byrnes, Vice President of Marketing, Amber Road
Steve Keighley, Solutions Consultant, Amber Road

Join us to learn how can help you tackle your compliance challenges.  Register today!


Amber Road Launches, a Free Cloud-based Portal for Global Trade

Amber Road, a leading provider of Global Trade Management solutions, announces the launch of its latest trade compliance product, is a suite of nine different research tools that helps companies import and export goods more quickly and affordably, while staying compliant with country specific trade regulations. will enable users to instantly perform numerous global trade activities including: restricted party screening, product classification, and landed cost calculations. What used to require hours of manual interpretation of trade rules is now an automated process achieved instantly via

Sign up now on

Upcoming Trade Compliance Webinar

Join World Trade 100 and Amber Road (formerly Management Dynamics, Inc.) on Thursday December 15th at 2 PM EST for a complimenattary webinar, Global Trade Compliance in the Oil & Gas Industry: A Case Study with Weatherford.

Global trade experts will explain the importance of automating trade compliance processes and the difficulties oil and gas companies face, as well as present recent developments in the industry.  By attending this webinar, you will walk away with:

-  A better understanding of the export compliance challenges oil and gas companies are facing
-  Various strategic considerations to think about when implementing an automated trade compliance solution
-  Best practices you can use to improve your company’s export compliance processes

Speakers will include:
Scott Byrnes, Vice President of Marketing, Amber Road (formerly Management Dynamics, Inc.)
Natalia Shehadeh, Director of Trade Compliance, Weatherford
Scott Johnston, Attorney, Specializing in U.S. Import/Export Law, Givens & Johnston, PLLC

Join us and find out how you can automate your trade compliance process!

Management Dynamics Changes Name to Amber Road!

New Name Marks Continued Growth and Evolution for Global Trade Management Leader 

Management Dynamics, a leading provider of Global Trade Management solutions, today announced that it has changed its name to Amber Road.  The name change comes during a year of rapid expansion, marked by a 40% growth in employees, a 325% increase in European bookings, and the opening of a flagship office in Tysons Corner, Virginia.  This breakout year is anchored by a 33% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) in overall revenue for the past decade. 

“Today, our SaaS-based solutions span fourteen software products that include global transportation management, import/export compliance, supplier management, supply chain visibility and a content knowledgebase covering trade regulations and tariffs for more than 120 countries, “  said Jim Preuninger, CEO.

To learn more, please read the full press release or visit


Upcoming Export Compliance Webinar Series

Part One: Restricted Party Screening

Join Customs & Trade Solutions, Inc. and Management Dynamics for a complimentary three-part Export Compliance Webinar Series, which will address the three key steps of any Export Compliance Program (ECP): Restricted Party Screening, Product Classification, and Shipment Screening and Documentation.

The first webinar will be held on Tuesday, September 20th at 2:00pm EDT and will review in detail the most common first step of any export compliance program, Restricted Party Screening (RPS).

 Global trade compliance experts will show you how to automate Restricted Party Screening to reduce your compliance risk, as well as provide a discussion on industry challenges and best practices for building an Export Compliance Program (ECP), including:
-  Tips for establishing a cost-effective compliance program in a down economy
-  Understanding of the technology available to manage RPS today
-  How you can implement screening software across your organization
-  Screening best practices of today’s top global exporters

Speakers will include:
Suzanne Richer, President, Customs & Trade Solutions, Inc.
Sanjeev Williams, Product Manager, Management Dynamics

Register for the webinar today!

Mark your calendars for the next two webinars in this series!
Product Classification: Friday, October 21
Shipment Screening & Documentation: Friday, November 18


Management Dynamics Releases New Version of On-Demand Export Compliance Solution

Enhanced Restricted Party Screening and License Determination and Management among New Features

Management Dynamics today announced the release of Export On-Demand 1.2, its export compliance solution for small and medium-sized exporters. The new release provides for enhanced compliance screening and management of export licenses. Easily configured and deployed in a SaaS-based model, Export On-Demand can be implemented in a modular fashion without the cost and expense of an on-premise solution.
“This latest release of Export On-Demand improves support for global exporters with enhanced embargo and restricted party screening, as well as a new license determination and management module,” stated Nathan Pieri, senior vice president, marketing and product management for Management Dynamics. “The modularity of Export On-Demand allows our clients to first establish a foundation by managing product compliance and screening parties, then adding successive capabilities such as global license management, document generation and filing.”
To learn more about the features available in Export On-Demand 1.2, read the full press release.

What’s Happening with Export Reform?

The Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) recently published proposed changes to US export law in the Federal Register and asked for public comment. The changes primarily deal with the fact that the US has two lists for items that require export control and licensing:  the US Munitions List (USML) administered by the State Department, and the Commerce Control List (CCL) maintained by the Commerce Department.
The current export control statute, written in 1979, reflects its Cold War heritage and hasn’t adapted to the rapid pace of technological change since then. Many items on the USML that were once considered high risk to national security are now widely available or low risk.
A key aspect of the proposed reform legislation would remove those items from the USML and move them to the CCL where exemptions to licensing are more flexible. This would allow the government to focus its limited resources on controlling transactions that need the highest level of scrutiny.
The details of the reform are available here. Of course, Management Dynamics will continue to monitor the changes proposed to the export control rules and numbering system. Once enacted, our classification and license determination products will accurately reflect the changes. For now, we support the efforts of our legislators to update and streamline the export control lists so they are more in line with today’s technologies.

Webinar Q&A Follow-Up

Export Compliance: Best Practices in High Volume Screening

During our recent webinar with American Shipper, “Export Compliance: Best Practices in High Volume Screening,” industry experts discussed the latest trends and best practices in export screening.  The attendees asked some excellent questions, but the one-hour time slot did not allow enough time to answer them all.  As promised, we compiled all of the questions asked during the webinar, and their responses.  Here are a few:

Q: Verizon screens customers and employees. Does it also screen other parties such as suppliers and banks?
A: That periodic screening is only for Verizon employees and customers. However, in transactional screening we screen all parties associated to that transaction, customer and contracts associated to the customer (there is no exception). 

Q: Do companies make case by case decisions as to whether or not to do business with denied entities?
A: A company should never do business with a denied party. Our software allows users to research potential hits and make a determination if they are potentially doing business with a denied party. We track users and their decisions to provide complete accountability.

Q: What is the assessment of the consolidated US Government screening solution that’s now available online?
A: The consolidated list that’s now posted only includes a portion of the lists that need to be checked and is US centric.  It alone is not sufficient to ensure you or your organization is not doing business with a restricted party.  There are literally dozens of other lists including the United Nations and many others around the world that also need to be considered.

Q: What is an exporter’s responsibility if they sell to reputable distributors and don’t know who the end user/customer is?
A: If your organization is the US Principal Party in Interest, then you are ultimately responsible.  The other consideration is what’s your appropriate level of due diligence to ensure you and your distributor are appropriately screening?  How do you know the distributor is screening?  Have you asked?  How far do you need to go to ensure compliance?  The answer to that question depends on the circumstances and if you are aware of any red flags. You can ask questions until you are comfortable with your distributor’s trade compliance program?  Have or can they prove to you they have a comprehensive effort that complies with the letter and spirit of the law?  How much exposure, risk and liability are you willing to take on without knowing the ultimate end-use and end-user of your products or services?  What’s your relationship with your distributors?  Do you trust them?  Again, what proof do you have they are screening?

Q: What are some best practices around positive hit escalation where the screening system does not strictly block the transaction?
A: If you have a potential hit, most of our customers will put the transaction on hold and work diligently to clear the party in question.  Our workflow allows users by organization to work the issue and escalate to management as necessary.  We provide a number of additional attributes, source list documentation and even pictures to help resolve the potential hit.

Q: Are companies required to screen their Customers or Vendors personnel or is it sufficient to screen the company you are contracting with as long as contract or POs identify the company is responsible for compliance? If so how do you a manage phone calls, etc.
A: In most cases screening the customer or vendor is sufficient.  If the personnel’s information is available, for example your contact at ABC company then it would be considered a best practice to screen that contact as well. When it comes to phone calls and interaction with personnel, it really depends on how sensitive the information you are communicating is.

Q: How do you handle Chinese or other language character sets?
A: Other character sets (Arabic, Japanese, etc) are published with a transcribed English phrase so that screening can be performed using both the English and local language character sets.

To view all the questions and answers, please click here.