South Korean authorities have arrested a South Korean oil broker for allegedly illegally supplying about USD 15 million worth of diesel fuel to North Korea, according to Korea Coast Guard on Monday (30 January).
The unidentified broker and his accomplices were accused of supplying 18,000 tonnes of diesel (equivalent to 18 billion won in market value) to North Korea on a total of 35 occasions from October 2021 to January last year.
“Without approval from relevant authorities, they loaded the diesel on a Russian oil tanker belonging to a domestic oil supplier, made contact with a Chinese vessel waiting in the South China Sea, and transferred diesel to the Chinese vessel. The vessel then transferred the fuel to a North Korean ship,” the Korea Coast Guard said.
The West Sea Coast Guard’s wide-area investigation team arrested the oil broker for violating the Inter-Korean Exchange and Cooperation Act.
In addition, two employees of a Korean oil refinery supplier have also been charged without arrest.
An official from the West Sea Coast Guard’s wide-area investigation team, said: “We were able to make the arrest after travelling around the country for several months, collecting relevant evidence and persistently tracking it down. We will thoroughly investigate whether other companies are doing the same.”
Photo credit: Lauren Seo on Unsplash
Published: 31 January, 2023
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