…By Lola Smith for TDPel Media.
A video capturing the moment security operatives from the Joint Task Force, Operation Delta Safe intercepted a vessel carrying barrels of stolen crude oil and subsequently setting it on fire has surfaced on social media.
The incident took place in the Escravos region of Delta State on Monday, July 10th.
Vessel belonging to Holab Maritime Services intercepted with 800,000 litres of stolen crude oil
According to reports, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) intercepted a vessel owned by Holab Maritime Services Limited with a cargo of 800,000 litres of stolen crude oil.
The vessel was apprehended offshore, with the captain and crew members on board.
Illegal acquisition of crude oil from offshore well-jacketed vessel in Ondo State
Rear Admiral Olusegun Ferreira, the Commander of the Joint Task Force, Operation Delta Safe, stated that the intercepted crude oil cargo was illegally sourced from an offshore well-jacketed vessel in Ondo State.
The vessel did not possess any legal documentation to support its activities.
Vessel operated stealthily for 12 years
Investigations revealed that the intercepted vessel, named MT TURA II and owned by HOLAB MARITIME SERVICES LIMITED, had been operating covertly for the past 12 years.
The vessel’s last reported location was at the Tin Can Port in July 2011.
Destruction of vessel serves as a warning and deterrent
Following the investigations, the appropriate government authorities decided to destroy the vessel as a strong warning and deterrent to those involved in illegal activities related to stolen crude oil.
The aim is to combat the significant economic losses, corruption, environmental devastation, and social instability caused by the illegal trade of stolen crude oil in Nigeria.
Combating the illegal trade of stolen crude oil
The destruction of vessels involved in transporting stolen crude oil is considered crucial in deterring illegal activities.
The illicit trade not only causes substantial economic losses to Nigeria and legitimate stakeholders in the oil industry but also perpetuates corruption, environmental destruction, and social instability.
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