Oil price sees kidnap rise
Nigeria still the hot spot.
Low oil price means tanker crews are now kidnap targets
by Edwin Lampert
The traditional modus operandi of pirates off the coast of West Africa was that they would target tanker cargoes rather than crews.
But improved naval patrolling (by the Nigerian and other littoral navies) may have made cargo theft more difficult and dangerous. Cargo theft, particularly of large amounts of refined oil products, takes time and so criminals have moved to a crime where less time is spent on board vessels and leaves them less exposed to naval patrols, ie the kidnap for ransom of ships’ crews. In addition, it may be that for the time being, the drop in oil prices has made oil theft a less lucrative proposition than kidnapping for ransom.
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