Oil Theft: 12 Suspects caught

The Nigerian Navy on Monday handed over 12 suspected oil thieves to the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps.

The suspects were arrested for stealing 161,280 litres of diesel worth N30 million in Asari-Toru Local Government Area of Rivers State.

Commander Chindo Yahaya, Base Operations Officer of the Navy Ship Pathfinder, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, who also handed over a barge, three wooden boats, a tug boat and 172 drums of diesel to the NSCDC, revealed that the suspects were arrested at different locations of the area.

Yahaya disclosed that the barge named MV Saviour was filled with 120,000 litres of diesel, adding that the wooden boat contained 172 drums and 41,280 litres of stolen diesel.

“The barge, MV Saviour, contained 120, 000 litres of diesel, while the wooden boats carried a combined capacity of 41, 280 litres of stolen diesel filled into 172 drums,” he said.

Yahaya added that, “On November 25, we went on patrol along Alakiri creek in Asari-Toru Local Government Area based on intelligence report of the presence of two barges; a tug boat and some speed boats lifting crude oil and illegally refined AGO (diesel).

“On arriving at Alakiri creek; the patrol team intercepted a tug boat and a barge with five suspects. Also, on December 1, based on intelligence report, we intercepted three wooden boats loaded with about 172 drums containing substance suspected to be illegally refined AGO at Iyalama creek.

“Upon interrogation, they (suspects) were unable to offer any convincing answers and as such, we have to hand them over to NSCDC for detailed investigation and prosecution.”

Christy Abiakam, NSCDC Deputy Commandant in the State received the suspects, promising that the corps would investigate the suspects and prosecute any of them found culpable.

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