Mnuchin Is Ordered to Give Exxon More Russia Sanction Documents

(Bloomberg) -- Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin was ordered by a federal judge to give Exxon Mobil Corp. more privileged documents related to a $2 million fine assessed against the energy company for violating sanctions related to Russia’s 2014 invasion of Ukraine.

U.S. District Judge Jane Boyle in Dallas on Wednesday rejected Treasury’s objection to a magistrate judge’s June order to hand over more documents sought by Exxon to help challenge the fine. Boyle set a Sept. 21 deadline for Treasury to comply.

Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control said it already gave the company a 23,000-page administrative record that includes all non-privileged material. Exxon said the company itself provided the vast majority of documents in the record, and that it wasn’t complete.

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 first 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."

The Treasury Department declined to comment on the judge’s order.

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