2008_12_650fifth.jpgThe United State has filed a civil forfeiture action for 40% interest in 650 Fifth Avenue, a Midtown Manhattan skyscraper. The feds say that the 40% stake is owned by a shell company for Iranian terrorists—the stake is owned by Iranian state bank Bank Melli, but, per the FBI, "Bank Melli's ownership interest was, however, disguised." (A 1995 law prohibits "any person from exporting or causing to be exported from the United States, to Iran or the Government of Iran, any goods, technology, or services without... a valid
export license from the United States Department of Treasury.") The NY Times reports, "The seizure was the latest step in the government’s broader effort to financially suffocate Iran’s biggest banks, several of which have been accused of funneling money to groups like Hamas and financing Iran’s nuclear missile program." Tenants in the building include Citibank and the Juicy flagship store.