18 October 2016, Abuja – The Nigerian Navy has arrested 25 suspects for illegal bunkering activities in the Niger Delta.
The 25 suspects were arrested in different locations in Akwa Ibom, Delta and Rivers State.
The Director of Information of the Nigerian Navy, Commodore Christian Ezekobe, said in a statement on Tuesday that 23 of the suspects were arrested in three Cotonou boats in Ibeno area of Akwa Ibom State.
He said two of the boats were carrying 55 and 48 suspected illegally refined crude oil while a third was loaded with 188 empty drums when the Navy arrested them.
Ezekobe said the suspects who were arrested by operatives of the NNS Jubilee had been handed over to the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps for further action.
He stated also that a patrol team deployed by the Forward Operation Base, Escravos, arrested three suspected oil thieves and destroyed six Cotonou boats carrying suspected crude oil around Sandhills Creek in Warri South West Local Government Area.
The naval operatives were also said to have recovered two wooden boats laden with 300 metric tonnes of stolen crude oil and a pumping machine.
Ezekobe added that another patrol team from the NNS Pathfinder arrested eight suspects and destroyed speed boats laden with 100 MT of illegally refined AGO, during a raid at Adokiakiri, around Okrika and Dutch Island at Onne, River State.
According to him “Two barges containing 500MT of suspected stolen crude oil were also destroyed by the team.”
Ezekobe stated further that the patrol team also arrested three suspects aboard MV Omete IV and a large wooden barge laden with 230 MT of illegally refined AGO around FOT One, Rivers State.
The Navy Director of Information said that another suspect was picked up by a patrol team from NNS Delta at Saba Creek in Warri South Local Government Area.
He said a refinery site and a Cotonou boat laden with suspected stolen 83 MT of crude oil were destroyed.