Crew Kidnapped by Pirates With Machine Guns Near Brass, Nigeria
09.03.2019: 1115 UTC: Posn: 03:57.2N – 006:39.0E, Around 32nm SE of Brass, Nigeria.
Pirates armed with machine guns in two speed boats approached an offshore support vessel underway. The Captain immediately notified the naval escort security boat which manoeuvred to engage the attackers. One speed boat closed in from the port side of the vessel and crossed the bow, while the other speed boat exchanged fire with the security boat. Alarm raised, crew proceeded to the engine room and all power was shut down. The pirates boarded the vessel with the aid of an elongated ladder. They broke into the accommodation, vandalized the cabins and took crew belongings and vessel’s properties. The pirates then proceeded to the engine room, kidnapped five men and escaped. The remaining crews sailed the vessel under escort to a safe anchorage. One Nigerian Navy armed guard reported killed in the exchange of fire between the naval security boat and the pirates. Investigations ongoing.