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Navy Arrests 11 Indians, 3 Ghanaian For Oil Theft In Bayelsa

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A group made up of 11 Indian nationals, three Ghanaians and two Nigerians  were arrested by the Nigerian Navy Forward Operating Base (FOB), NNS Formoso on Brass Island for illegal oil activities in Brass, Bayelsa state.

The men were arrested by security operatives with an unknown vessel while trying to lift substances suspected to be crude oil from an offshore loading terminal in Brass.

According to security operatives, the Brass/Nembe axis of the Nigerian waterways is a popular spot  for carrying out illegal oil dealings by hoodlums.

Confirming the arrest, the commanding officer of the Nigerian Navy Forward Operating Base (FOB), NNS Formoso on Brass Island, Navy Capt. Noel Madugu, said the suspects  had no legal license with them to lift oil when they were caught by his men.

This Day reports:

Recently, the Joint Task Force (JTF), Operation Pulo Shield, raised the alarm over the activities of foreign oil vessels venturing into Nigerian waters from the Brass area.

The vessels used for carrying out the illicit business were said to have come from Ghana even though majority of the crew were Indian nationals.

The Commanding Officer of the Nigerian Navy Forward Operating Base (FOB), NNS Formoso on Brass Island, Navy Capt. Noel Madugu, said the suspects  had no permit to lift oil and had no business being in the area at the time.

Madugu said though during the time of intercepting the vessels and arrest of the suspects, they were yet to carry out the operation.
The suspects, according to him, were arrested while waiting for small vessels which could easily navigate the snaky creeks of the Niger Delta to discharge the crude into the big vessel for onward movement to a yet-to-be-ascertained destination.

“Our operatives arrested 11 Indian nationals, three Ghanaians and two Nigerians as they were waiting for vessels from the creeks.

“During the time of arrest, the suspects could not provide permits authorising them to load from Agbara platform of the Nigerian Agip Oil Company’s terminal in Brass. Their vessels came from Ghana.”
The commander said the suspects would be handed over to the relevant prosecuting agency after preliminary investigation.

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