US sanctions Taiwan firm for NKorea dealings

Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. is slapping sanctions on a Taiwanese company and its general manager suspected of procuring and shipping hundreds of thousands of dollars of equipment to North Korea that could be used for its weapons program.

The Treasury Department announced designation Friday of Trans Multi Mechanics Co. Ltd. and Chang Wen-Fu for links to a Taiwanese man, Alex Tsai, arrested in Estonia last week.

Tsai and his son, a U.S. resident, were charged in Chicago with seeking to bypass a ban on export of weapons machinery.

Trans Multi Mechanics Co. Ltd. was allegedly involved in some purchases resulting in charges.

Tsai was designated in 2009 for supporting North Korea's premier arms dealer, Korea Mining Development Trading Corporation.

The U.S. is increasingly concerned about Pyongyang's development of missile and nuclear weapons.