Authorities arrested a New York man Thursday on charges saying he exported munitions to a Malaysian company.
Prosecutors say Jilani Humayun, 59, violated the Arms Export Control Act, which regulates the export of "defense articles and services." Humayun is also charged with conspiracy to commit mail fraud and launder money.
According to the criminal complaint, Humayun applied for an export license through the U.S. State Department while he was working for an aviation parts company in 2003. The complaint alleges the application stated that Humayun's company sought to send parts to the Saudi Arabian government. That application, however, was denied.
The following year, Humayun started his own defense export company, named Vash International Inc. to export tanks, guided missiles and rocket launchers. The complaint alleges Humayun's company exported F-5 and F-14 fighter jet and Chinook helicopter components to the Malaysian company 11 times from 2004 to May 2006.
"The details of the crime with which Jilani Humayun is charged are particularly disturbing, as he is alleged to have knowingly shipped technology as dangerous as F-5 and F-14 parts to Malaysia without any regard for the ultimate destination," said U.S. attorney Michael J. Garcia of the Southern District of New York. "As is well-documented in public reports, the sole customer of F-14 parts is the Iranian air force."
The parts Humayun is accused of exporting are all on the U.S. Munitions List, a listing of materials classified as defense-related. Investigators say Humayun acknowledged to them that he was familiar with the list and the government regulations that govern exports of items on that list.
Prosecutors say neither Humayun nor any agents from his company applied for the proper export licenses needed for the transactions, despite purported claims on a Vash International brochure to the contrary.
Federal agents that questioned Humayun say he admitted that he purposely undervalued the parts in customs paperwork to avoid paying duty fees. They also say the Malaysian company wired $357,085 to Vash International.
If convicted, Humayun faces a maximum 10-year prison sentence on each of the 11 Arms Export Control Act violations, and 20 years each for the conspiracy charges.