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An Italian small business owner will sue the U.S. Treasury Department after mistakenly being put on a sanctions blacklist just before Donald Trump's departure from the Oval office.
Alessandro Bazzoni, owner of a graphic design company in Sardinia, has been unable to trade since January 19, the date his business was slapped with sanctions as part of the Trump administration’s sanctions on enterprises linked to Venezuela's crude oil industry.
The Treasury Department erroneously blacklisted Bazzoni’s graphic design company, SeriGraphicLab, along with a restaurant and pizzeria in Verona owned by another businessman called Alessandro Bazzoni but removed both from the blacklist last week, on March 31. Although the restaurant owner’s bank account has been reactivated, the mistake led to the businessman’s account being closed down.
“It was a momentous error on their part, and one that is having serious implications as it is preventing me from working,” he said.
Bazzoni, who works independently, could withdraw the money in his account but can no longer do business. According to Italian law, he needs a bank account to receive payments from clients. Not having a bank account also means he cannot access the financial aid he is entitled to receive as part of the Italian government’s COVID-19 relief plan.
“I have to go to another bank to see if I can open an account there,” he said. “But for now, I cannot sufficiently operate my business, so much so I have started to look for other jobs.”
Stuff of the you-can't-make-up variety. If you thought owning a restaurant in northern Italy or a graphic design company in Sardinia meant you were safe from murderous US sanctions, think again! (thread)https://t.co/swUh9fRGog