The Johor State division of Malaysia Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) on Monday (16 August) said it has successfully arrested five ships during a six-hour period on Sunday over alleged entry permission offenses.
Johor State Maritime Director, First Admiral Nurul Hizam bin Zakaria, stated two tankers and a cargo ship were arrested by MMEA assets in the Tanjung Sedili Maritime Zone via Op Anchor Haram, while two barter trade boats were arrested within the Batu Pahat Maritime Zone.
All five vessels allegedly failed to present any documents of permission to enter Malaysia’s waters, he noted.
The first detention involving a Togo-registered cargo ship occurred around 9.47 am at 13 eastern nautical miles of Tanjung Balau, Johor; the vessel had a crew of 16 comprising of Egyptian and Syrian individuals between 22 to 46 years old.
At approximately 1.55 pm, a Cayman Islands registered tanker was arrested at 13.1 nautical miles northeast of Tanjung Siang, Johor; the tanker was operated by 27 Filipino and Russian crew between 20 to 57 years old.
The third detention was carried out against a Panama-registered tanker at 13.9 nautical miles east of Tanjung Siang, not far from where the second tanker was arrested; the vessel was manned by 25 Filipino and Russian crew aged between 23 to 63 years old.
Within the Batu Pahat Maritime Zone, MMEA personnel arrested two barter trade boats around 3.35 pm at 2.4 nautical miles of southwest Tanjung Tohor; the boats were operated by eight Indonesian crew between 25 years to 42 years old.
All vessels involved are arrested and will be investigated under Section 491 B (1) (l) of the Merchant Shipping Ordinance 1952. If found guilty, parties face a fine not exceeding RM 100,000 or an imprisonment term for not more than two years, or both.
“Malaysian Maritime [MMEA] through the Johor State Maritime will continue to increase enforcement and patrol around Johor’s water area to curb illegal distanced ships,” states MMEA.
“It is advised to all ship owners and shipping agents to continue to obey and respect the rule of state water laws especially in Johor.”
A series of earlier MMEA detentions in 2021 have been reported by bunkering publication Manifold Times (below):
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Photo credit: MMEA
Published: 17 August, 2021
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