Brian Egan

Brian Egan

Brian Egan advises on a number of international legal issues that affect U.S. and foreign clients, including economic sanctions, export controls, and anti-money laundering programs; national security trade and investment reviews; international arbitration and other cross-border disputes; international cybersecurity and data privacy; and issues of public international law. He has worked in various senior legal positions for the US government, giving him keen insight into domestic and international legal matters that influence US government national security and foreign relations policies and programs. Before joining Steptoe, Mr. Egan served as the Legal Adviser to the US Department of State, the Legal Adviser to the National Security Council, Deputy White House Counsel, and Assistant General Counsel for Enforcement and Intelligence with the US Department of the Treasury.  Mr. Egan has regularly appeared in public fora to speak on international legal issues, including testifying before Congress, public speaking engagements, and panel presentations.

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AML CDD Rule for Certain U.S. Financial Institutions Effective Today

The FinCEN Customer Due Diligence Requirements for Financial Institutions, known as the CDD Rule or the “Fifth Pillar,” becomes effective today for certain covered U.S. Financial Institutions.  This CDD Rule, which amends U.S. Bank Secrecy Act regulations, seeks to improve financial transparency and prevent money laundering/terrorist financing.  The CDD Rule applies to covered U.S. financial … Continue Reading

OFAC Eases Maintenance/Wind-Down and Divestment Restrictions in New General Licenses

On May 1, OFAC issued two amended general licenses under the Ukraine-Related Sanctions Regulations (URSR). General License No. 12B, superseding General License No. 12A, authorizes additional activities necessary to the maintenance and winding down of operations or existing contracts. General License No. 13A, superseding General License No. 13, authorizes certain additional transactions necessary to divest … Continue Reading

ZTE Denial Order Imposed

On April 16, 2018, the U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) imposed a denial order involving Zhongxing Telecommunications Equipment Corporation of Shenzhen, China (ZTE Corporation) and ZTE Kangxun Telecommunications Ltd of Hi-New Shenzhen, China (ZTE Kangxun).  The denial order, effective immediately, restricts ZTE Corporation and ZTE Kangxun from participating in any … Continue Reading

How Far Can the U.S. Take Trade and Investment Restrictions on China?

Very far, under existing U.S. law. The authority already available to the President under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) is vast, and could be applied to Chinese investments with the (relatively) simple declaration of a national emergency related to such investments.  Reports have already been swirling about a plan by the Trump Administration … Continue Reading

Texas-Based U.S. Gold Refinery Pleads Guilty for Failing to Maintain an Adequate Anti-Money Laundering Program and Agrees to Forfeit $15M, Continuing Trend of Criminal Enforcement Actions and Prosecutions for Compliance Failures

A series of recent federal enforcement actions targeting weaknesses in Bank Secrecy Act/anti-money laundering (BSA/AML) compliance programs continued on March 16, when U.S. Gold refinery Elemetal LLC, based in Dallas, Texas, pled guilty in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida to a single-count information charging failure to maintain an adequate BSA/AML program. … Continue Reading

FinCEN Issues Proposed Rule to Designate ABLV Bank as Being of Primary Money Laundering Concern

On February 13, 2018, the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), pursuant to Section 311 of the PATRIOT Act, seeking to prohibit the opening or maintaining of a correspondent account in the United States for, or on behalf of, ABLV Bank, located in Riga, Latvia. … Continue Reading

More Sanctions Ahead After Treasury’s Reports to Congress on Russian Oligarchs, Defense/Intel Sanctions?

The Treasury Department late last night issued several reports to Congress pursuant to mandates in the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA), including under CAATSA Sections 241 (Report on Senior Foreign Political Figures and Oligarchs in the Russian Federation) and 242 (Report on Effects of Expanding Sanctions to Include Sovereign Debt and Derivative Products). … Continue Reading

More on the Russian Oligarch Report

As indicated in recent media reports, for example from Bloomberg and The Wall Street Journal, many are closely watching developments related to the “Russian oligarch” report due from the Trump Administration next week under Section 241 of the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act.  Under Section 241, the Secretary of the Treasury (in consultation with the … Continue Reading

President Trump Reissues Iran Sanctions Waivers, but Warns That Concerns over JCPOA Must Be Addressed

On January 12, President Trump announced that he was reissuing statutory waivers necessary to continue certain sanctions relief pursuant to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (“JCPOA” or Iran nuclear deal), but stated that this was the last time he would reissue such waivers unless his concerns over the agreement were addressed.  On the same … Continue Reading

WorldECR Publishes Article on Coping with US Secondary Sanctions

Steptoe partners Meredith Rathbone and Brian Egan authored an article on US secondary sanctions published in WorldECR’s special report, “The Global Agenda.” The article discusses how US secondary sanctions seek to target and restrict the activities of non-US persons and explains how best to deal with those sanctions. More information is available here.… Continue Reading

Trump Designates North Korea as a ‘State Sponsor of Terrorism,’ Makes Additional Sanctions Designations

On November 20, 2017, President Trump announced that North Korea would be designated a “state sponsor of terrorism.”  The only other countries with this designation are Syria, Iran, and Sudan.  The president also stated that the United States would announce the imposition of additional sanctions on Pyongyang.  The next day, the US Department of the … Continue Reading

Who’s Your Correspondent? FinCEN Penalizes Texas-Based Bank for Bank Secrecy Act Violations

On November, 1, 2017, the US Department of the Treasury, Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), announced that Lone Star National Bank (Lone Star), operating in Texas, entered into a civil money penalty consent for alleged willful violations of the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) and 31 C.F.R. Chapter X regulations involving inadequate anti-money laundering (AML) compliance … Continue Reading

Steptoe Cyberlaw Podcast: Update on Possible CFIUS Reform Legislation

On October 30, 2017, Brian Egan and Alexis Early were featured on Steptoe’s Cyberlaw Podcast to discuss the possible introduction of CFIUS reform legislation.  They discuss the rumored provisions in Sen. John Cornyn’s (R-TX) Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernization Act and what it means for US sellers and foreign buyers.… Continue Reading

President Trump Outlines New Strategic Approach Regarding Iran

In a speech today, President Trump announced the result of his Administration’s strategic review of foreign policy towards Iran, including the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (“JCPOA”) implemented by the Obama administration in January 2016.  As set out in a White House fact sheet, the Trump Administration will seek to expand the focus of U.S. … Continue Reading

Lawsuits for Cuban Confiscated Property Still Suspended, For Now

On Friday, July 14, 2017, the Trump administration joined the administrations of Presidents Clinton, Bush, and Obama in suspending Title III of the Cuban Liberty and Democratic Solidarity (LIBERTAD) Act of 1996, also known as the Helms-Burton Act, a controversial provision that would authorize lawsuits in U.S. courts to recover damages related to confiscated property … Continue Reading

Power of the Pen: Did Chairman Corker’s Letter End US Arms Sales to Saudi Arabia?

On June 26, Senator Corker, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (SFRC), informed Secretary Tillerson that, in light of the current diplomatic stalemate between Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Qatar, the SFRC would not “provide any further clearances during the informal review period on sales of lethal military equipment” to the six … Continue Reading

Back to the Future on “Extraterritorial” Sanctions on Russian Pipelines?

Earlier this month, after the Senate overwhelmingly passed a bill that would authorize (and in some cases mandate) sanctions on foreign energy firms that participated in certain Russian energy projects, the Governments of Germany and Austria issued a joint statement that they “cannot accept a threat of extraterritorial sanctions, illegal under international laws, against European … Continue Reading

Epsilon Electronics: A Cautionary Tale on Transshipments?

On May 26, 2017, in Epsilon Electronics v. US Department of the Treasury, a split panel of the DC Circuit Court of Appeals partially upheld and partially remanded to the district court a determination by the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) to impose a penalty of over $4 million against Epsilon for … Continue Reading
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