Chinpo Shipping found guilty of aiding North Korean arms smuggling

A district court in Singapore has found Chinpo Shipping, a company linked with North Korean arms smuggling, guilty of two criminal charges. The company was charged with transferring financial assets or resources that could have been used to contribute to North Korea’s weapon programmes, which are subject to UN sanctions.

The UN has named Chinpo Shipping as aiding a shipment of Cuban fighter jets and missile parts that were bound for North Korea when they were seized in Panama in 2013. Chinpo Shipping, a firm the report said was “co-located” with the North Korean embassy in Singapore, acted as the agent for a Pyongyang-based company that operated the Chong Chon Gang ship, which was arrested in Panama with a cargo full of Soviet era arms.

The firm was also charged with carrying out a remittance business without a licence between 2009 and 2013.

Tan Hui Tin, a Singaporean citizen, was also charged in June. Tan is a shareholder and director of Chinpo Shipping.

A sentence will be announced in late January.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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