Suspected Iran-bound Helicopter Grounded

DALLAS (AP) - Federal agents have grounded a helicopter they suspect was earmarked for shipment to Iran.

The $8 million aircraft sits in a Bell Helicopter hangar in Arlington while agents investigate the circumstances surrounding the helicopter. The Dallas Morning News reports two other U.S.-made helicopters have made it to Iran.

The News reports that at least one of the aircraft is equipped with night vision and autopilot technology subject to strict U.S. restrictions.

The United States has imposed a trade embargo on Iran since 1995, but foreign companies linked to the United States can still use legal loopholes to sell U.S.-made goods legally to nations under U.S. export bans.

The Italian company Tiber Aviation bought three Bell 412 helicopters from the Mexican company Helivan last year for about $22 million.


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