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Tuesday, July 23, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Uncle Sam Seizes Midtown NY Office Building

MANHATTAN (CN) - The United States seeks forfeiture of the Alavi Foundation's 36-story office building at 650 Fifth Ave. in Midtown Manhattan, claiming Alavi has been laundering money for Iran.

The amended federal complaint claims the Alavi Foundation and Assa Corp. have been "providing numerous services to the Iranian Government and transferring funds from 650 Fifth Avenue Company to Bank Melli, a bank wholly owned and controlled by the Government of Iran."

Uncle Sam seeks forfeiture of the building under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, Executive Orders and U.S. Treasury Regulations.

The Justice Department said in a statement Thursday: "Today's amended civil complaint seeks the forfeiture of the Alavi Foundation's ownership interest in eight real properties, including 650 Fifth Avenue, and a number of bank accounts. No action has been taken against any tenants or occupants of those properties.

"As was the case with the underlying complaint filed in December 2008 against Assa Corporation's ownership interest in 650 Fifth Avenue, the tenants and occupants remain free to use the properties as they have before today's filing. There are no allegations of any wrongdoing on the part of any of these tenants or occupants."

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