WASHINGTON — The United States on Thursday slapped new sanctions on a North Korean government agency accused of illicitly financing slush funds to prop up the communist country's reclusive leadership.
The Treasury Department added the Korea Daesong Bank and Korea Daesong General Trading Corporation to its financial blacklist. The move freezes any assets the companies may have in US jurisdictions and bans Americans from doing business with them.
Treasury said both are part of "Office 39," a secretive bureau that raises money for senior North Korean leaders by producing, smuggling and distributing narcotics, and laundering money. It is also accused of importing luxury goods for top North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, his family, associates and other elite.