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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

U.S. Probes Iran Deal

WASHINGTON -- Declaring Iran had not changed its ways, the United States is launching an investigation into a $800 million contract signed by Royal Dutch/Shell Group with the National Iranian Oil Co. to develop offshore oil fields in the Gulf.

"We are clearly disappointed and very much concerned," Philip Reeker, a State Department spokesman, said Monday.

The investigation, which may take months, will center on whether the contract calls for economic penalties against Shell under a federal law designed to punish Iran economically by discouraging investments in the country.

The Iran-Libya Sanctions Act bars investments of more than $20 million in Iran and $40 million in Libya and provides a range of penalties for violations. These could include restrictions on Royal Dutch Shell's business in the United States and denial of export licenses.