Nigerian Navy Arrested 33 Suspected Oil Thieves, Seized Four-Five Vessels in Delta, Over Past Month

February 24: The Nigeria Navy Ship (NNS Delta), Warri, within three weeks, have arrested 33 suspected oil thieves in different operations around Escravos offshore in Warri Southwest Local Government area of Delta Sate.

The operations, which was carried out between January 15 and February 12 this year, also led to the seizure of three sea going vessels namely MT NELY, MT MADAM ESTHER and MT DE-PRAISE, as well as a wooden boat and a “badge” [sic].

According to sources, the patrol teams of NNS Delta first observed that the Automatic Identification System (AIS) of the vessels were switched off, which attracted their suspicions.

Upon boarding the vessels, navy personnel discovered that they were laden with crude oil, AGO also known as diesel amongst others without valid documents from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR).

Handing over the suspected oil thieves to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) officials for further investigations and prosecution on Monday, authorities confirmed that the suspects were arrested at different locations off Escravos rivers in the past three weeks.

Authorities stated, “From preliminary investigations, we discovered that the vessels did not have any valid oil lifting approval from NNPC and DPR. We also discovered that the vessels changed their names thrice without any valid papers, also no valid NIMASA sea faring certification at the time of arrrests”, he said.

Source / Read More: This Day Live

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