Mnuchin Says Exxon Can't See More Russia-Sanctions Documents

(Bloomberg) -- Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told a Texas judge that Exxon Mobil Corp. doesn’t have a right to see privileged documents related to a $2 million fine assessed against the energy company for violating sanctions related to Russia’s 2014 invasion of Ukraine.

Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control, which issued the penalty in July 2017, asked U.S. District Judge Jane Boyle in Dallas on Tuesday to overturn a magistrate judge’s June decision ordering Treasury to hand over more documents. OFAC said it’s already given the company a 23,000-page administrative record that includes all non-privileged material. Exxon has said it provided the vast majority of the documents in that record.

Exxon signed legal documents in May 2014 related to oil and gas projects in Russia with Igor Sechin, head of Rosneft OAO, who is on the Treasury’s list of sanctioned Russian nationals, the U.S. said. The alleged violations, which Exxon denies, occurred while President Donald Trump’s former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson led the Irving, Texas-based company.

Exxon sued over the penalty last year, arguing the agency’s interpretation of a 2014 executive order by former President Barack Obama violated the Administrative Procedure Act because it was "arbitrary and capricious."

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