ACSS & PoleStar FREE Webinar: Maritime Sanctions Unveiled: Navigating OFAC’s Key Priorities and Strategies for Dark Fleet Challenges - Association of Certified Sanctions Specialists

Maritime Sanctions Unveiled: Navigating OFAC’s Key Priorities and Strategies for Dark Fleet Challenges

April 4, 2024 | 09:00 AM – 10:15 AM NYC

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FREE Webinar

CSS Credits: 1.25


75 minutes


  • David Tannenbaum, Blackstone
  • Steve Bomgardner, Pole Star Global
  • Marc J. Armas, Walden Macht & Haran LLP


Alexander Witt CSS, Sanctions & Export Controls Consultant, ACSS


Thursday, April 4, 2024


  • 09:00 AM – 10:15 AM NYC
  • 02:00 PM – 03:15 PM London
  • 03:00 PM – 04:15 PM Amsterdam


The sights of the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) are focused squarely on enforcing maritime sanctions. The agency, alongside the US Department of Justice and other Coalition partners, has issued three advisories highlighting the need to spot sanctions risks of vessels and their cargo. In this webinar, we unpack the agency’s priorities, review notable trends in the Dark Fleet and advanced deceptive shipping practices, and discuss proactively addressing the increased threat environment.

Certificate of Attendance:

All active ACSS members will be able to download the certificate from the Learning Management System (under the achievements tab). 

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ACSS Members who attend the live session can download their Certificate of Attendance from our member-only platform.


David Tannenbaum

Blackstone Compliance Services
David Tannenbaum started his career in sanctions compliance while serving at OFAC, the US agency in charge of administering economic sanctions. In his capacity, he oversaw the analysis of blocked and rejected transactions and provided sanctions to some of the world’s largest financial institutions, Fortune 500 companies, and law firms.

After joining the private sector in 2013, David created Blackstone Compliance Services, a company specializing in sanctions compliance. As the director of Blackstone, he has led sanctions testing for three major monitorships on behalf of the US Department of Justice, Federal Reserve Board, New York Department of Financial Services, and foreign regulators such as the United Kingdom’s FCA and France’s APCR.

His experience goes beyond representing and responding to regulators and law enforcement authorities. He frequently works with some of the largest financial institutions and Fortune 500 companies to develop compliance programs and implement technology to detect sanctions evasion and money laundering. He has done significant work for half of the global Top-10 financial institutions. He has conducted many complex investigations spanning multiple jurisdictions where he untangled complicated sanctions networks used by North Korea, Iran, Syria, and Russia.

Mr. Tannenbaum graduated magna cum laude with an MBA and a Masters in United States Foreign Policy from American University. He also holds a bachelor’s degree in international studies from American University.

Captain Steve Bomgardner

VP – Commercial Markets
Pole Star Global
Captain Steve Bomgardner, VP – Commercial Markets at Pole Star Global is a seasoned leader with a diverse background in the maritime industry and green-technology space. His previous role at SailPlan, a maritime green-tech start-up, saw him at the helm of global commercial development, shaping the company’s go-to-market strategy and driving sales efforts. In addition to his roles in the private sector, Captain Steve also serves as a dedicated member of the Board of Directors for Eyesea, a non-profit organization at the forefront of mapping global maritime pollution and debris using cutting-edge cell phone technology.

Captain Steve’s impressive career trajectory also encompasses influential positions with two renowned ship registries, the Bahamas Maritime Authority (BMA) and the Liberia International Ship & Corporate Registry (LISCR). During his tenure, he took charge of operations in the Americas and played a pivotal role in establishing and overseeing a new Offshore and LNG division at LISCR.

Marc J. Armas

Walden Macht & Haran LLP
Marc is an experienced litigator, trial lawyer, and investigator whose practice focuses on white collar criminal and regulatory defense, crisis management, and internal investigations. Marc has handled a wide range of business crimes and investigations-related matters, including violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), False Claims Act (FCA), and Bank Secrecy Act (BSA), along with allegations of insider trading, digital currency theft, money laundering, sanctions violations, financial fraud, and market manipulation. Notably, Marc led the transaction review of an independent monitorship of a major foreign financial institution, pursuant to a consent order of the New York Department of Financial Services (DFS), and Marc serves as counsel to the Independent Consultant of a global bank, headquartered in the Middle East, conducting a review of the bank’s sanctions compliance program pursuant to a Cease-and-Desist order from the Federal Reserve Board.

 Marc previously served as an Assistant United States Attorney in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey (DNJ) and as an Assistant District Attorney in the Queens County District Attorney’s Office. During law school, Marc worked with several governmental agencies, including the U. S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York (SDNY), the New York County District Attorney’s Office, the New York City Police Department, and the Office of the Counselor to Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Before law school, Marc served on active duty as an officer in the United States Coast Guard, where he was stationed aboard a High Endurance Cutter and as part of a maritime counter-terrorism/piracy response team. During his time in the U.S. Coast Guard Reserves, Marc also was designated as a Reserves Judge Advocate General (JAG) officer.


Alexander Witt CSS

Sanctions & Export Controls Consultant

Alexander Witt is a Sanctions & Export Control Consultant for the Association of Certified Sanctions Specialists (ACSS). He is an expert in EU, US, and German Sanctions and Export Control Laws and Regulations. Previously Alexander worked as a Sanctions & Export Control Consultant at Full Circle Compliance and as an Export Compliance Officer at Fujifilm Europe in the Netherlands.

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