The Defence Headquarters has said that the Maritime component of the Armed forces had continued to hit hard on criminal entrepreneurs and arrested fishing trawler in the maritime domain.
The Acting Director, Defence Media Operations, Brig.-Gen. Bernard Onyeuko, disclosed this in a statement on Tuesday in Abuja.
Onyeuko disclosed that the Nigerian Navy Ship Delta patrol teams located an illegal refining site around Opumami in Warri South Local Government Area of Delta during its anti-Crude Oil Theft (COT)/anti-illegal bunkering operations during the week.
He added that the site had 30 ovens, 40 receivers and 16 dugout pits cumulatively laden with about 120,000 litres of product suspected to be stolen crude oil and 40,000 litres of suspected illegally refined AGO.
According to him, the team discovered another illegal refining site at around Opumami general area same day.
“The site had 2 ovens, one receiver, 8 x 250 litres metal drums and one dugout pit cumulatively laden with about 30,000 litres of suspected stolen crude oil and 25,000 litres of product suspected to be illegally refined AGO.
“No arrest was made during the operations as the miscreants fled on sighting NNS Delta patrol team. Due process is being followed to clear the site.
“In the same vein, Nigerian Navy Ship Dorina while on routine patrol arrested a fishing trawler, Hajiya Binta for operating in Nigerian waters without its Automatic Identification System (AIS).
“The arrest was effected at about 5 nautical miles off the ESCRAVOS breakwaters.
“Upon interrogation, the Captain of the vessel, affirmed that the AIS of the vessel was not operational as at the time of her arrest due to a fault it developed while at sea.
“Hajiya Binta was handed over to NIMASA officials on 31 Mar 2020 in line with due process,” he said.