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Malaysia: MMEA detains oil tanker and eight people in subsidised diesel smuggling op

10 Feb 2023

The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) on Tuesday (7 February) said it arrested an oil tanker for allegedly transferring subsidised diesel illegally. 

The incident happened at around 10.05pm on 6 February when a MMEA patrol boat spotted the tanker in the waters of Sungai Lebam. 

The Zanzibar-registered tanker vessel was believed to have transferred diesel from a tanker lorry.

The tanker vessel was manned by eight Indonesian crew aged between 19 and 60 years old and failed to produce any documents regarding the diesel cargo. 

Further investigation by MMEA led to the discovery of two tanker lorries with an oil pump and a 500 metre hose suspected of being used for the illegal oil transfer.

Malaysia: MMEA detains oil tanker and eight people in subsidised diesel smuggling operation

At around 11.45pm, the ship was detained and escorted to the Pengerang Maritime Zone Pier for further investigation. 

Upon inspection of the two tanker lorries, authorities believed they were carrying approximately 80,000 litres of subsidised diesel.

The tanker lorry drivers involved also failed to produce their driving licences and admitted to transporting the diesel from Seremban to the scene of the incident without having a valid permit for possession of the controlled item.

MMEA also said the oil tanker was previously detained on 20 January for illegally anchoring at 1.5 nautical miles southeast of Teluk Ramunia. 

The case is being investigated under Section 491B (1)(K) of the Merchant Shipping Ordinance 1952, Regulation 18 of the Control of Supplies (Amendment) Act 2021, Regulation 21 of the Control of Supplies Regulations 1974 and the Customs Act 1967.


Photo credit: Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency
Published: 10 February, 2023

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