Under the sanctions, any assets held by Wan in the US will be frozen and American citizens are forbidden from doing business with him.
Born in the Portuguese colony of Macao, Wan rose through the ranks of the triad to become one of the territory's most powerful crime bosses, waging a bloody war against rival gangs, with bombings, shootings and stabbings a regular occurrence. He was jailed in November 1999 on a host of charges, shortly before the colony was handed over to China.
Upon his release in 2012, Wan, who had always maintained his innocence, sought to reinvent himself -- at least publicly -- as a legitimate businessman, reportedly backing ventures in Cambodia and Palau. According to the US Treasury, he also gained membership of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), an advisory body to the ruling Communist Party.