*On Wednesday, Beyoncé and Jay Z were finally cleared of violating any U.S. laws by traveling to Cuba in April 2013.
The couple riled up pro-Cuban democracy activists and GOP lawmakers when they took the trip as part of an official “people-to-people” cultural exchange organized by a New York-based nonprofit group, which reportedly obtained approval from the U.S. government through the standard licensing process.
Most Americans who wish to visit Cuba need to obtain a license from the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), due to a long-standing trade embargo.
ON Wednesday, the Treasury Department’s Office of the Inspector General sent a report to OFAC’s director that cleared the couple of any wrongdoing.
The report’s conclusion reads as follows:
OFAC is authorized to license travel to Cuba for people-to-people educational exchanges that enhance contact with the Cuban people, support civil society in Cuba, or help promote the Cuban people’s independence from Cuban authorities. Based on our review of the applicable laws and regulations, OFAC guidelines, the OFAC case file for the non-profit organization including related correspondence between OFAC and the organization, and inquiry of OFAC officials, we believe OFAC’s determination that there was no apparent violation of U.S. sanctions with respect to Jay-Z and Beyoncé’s trip to Cuba was reasonable. While we are not making a formal recommendation in this memorandum, we believe that OFAC should document in its files with a summary of the basis for its determinations with respect to this matter.