American Express agrees to pay $5.2M to settle possible federal violations for Cuba travel

FILE - In this Jan. 14, 2013 file photo, Cubans wait to enter the U.S. Interests Section to apply for U.S. visas in Havana, Cuba. Travel is part of a larger, slow-moving thaw between the two countries and comes as both prepare for a sit-down talk on migration issues on Wednesday, July 17, 2013. (AP Photo/Ramon Espinosa, File)

FILE - In this Jan. 14, 2013 file photo, Cubans wait to enter the U.S. Interests Section to apply for U.S. visas in Havana, Cuba. Travel is part of a larger, slow-moving thaw between the two countries and comes as both prepare for a sit-down talk on migration issues on Wednesday, July 17, 2013. (AP Photo/Ramon Espinosa, File)

MIAMI — American Express has reached a settlement with the U.S. Treasury Department over more than 14,000 tickets that were issued for travel between Cuba and countries outside the U.S.

The Treasury Department announced Monday that American Express Travel Related Services, Inc. has agreed to pay $5.2 million to settle potential civil liability for apparent federal violations.

The department found that foreign branch offices and subsidiaries of American Express had issued about 14,500 tickets for travel to and from the island between December 2005 and November 2011.

Those bookings were an apparent violation of the Cuban Assets Control Regulations, which prohibit any transfer or credit and all payments in which Cuba has an interest.

American Express said it has put in place controls to make sure such bookings do not recur.

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