The Nigerian Navy said it has stepped up its operations against all forms of threats in the country’s maritime environment and has intensified its fight against crude oil thieves, pipeline vandals and other criminals operating in the Niger Delta.
The Navy Director of information, Commodore Cor Ezekobe disclosed this in a statement on Wednesday, 1 June, 2016.
According to the statement, three persons have been arrested by Navy operatives in connection with series of maritime crimes. The suspects: Sani a.k.a Dogonyaro, Usman a.k.a smally and Adamu Mani are still undergoing investigation and will be handed over to prosecuting authorities for further action.
“Similarly, operatives of Forward Operation Base (FOB) Badagry have arrested 5 citizens of Benin Republic in connection with economic crimes. The suspects are Philmen Agboku, Penu Daniel, Sule Soka, Dosu Victor and Sodope Olivie. They were arrested on 26 May 2016 along Tongeji-Port Novo axis at about 0500hrs in a wooden cotonou boat conveying about 900 jerricans. The jerricans contained product suspected to be stolen Premium Motor Spirit (PMS). However, the suspects are being interrogated in order to get in depth view of the gang and its sponsors.”
Ezekobe added that on 26 May 2016, a Nigerian Navy Patrol team deployed from NNS DELTA destroyed a large illegal refinery with storage tanks containing stolen crude oil and illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil (AGO) at Ayakurumo Community in Burutu LGA, in Delta State. The team also recovered three pumping machine and a boat carrying 80 drums of illegally refined AGO measuring 300 liters each.
The statement said the Nigerian Navy will continue to do its best to protect the Nation’s territorial waters and oil infrastructure.
The Navy called on citizens to cooperate with security agencies by providing useful information that will help in better policing the environment.