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Malaysia: MMEA detains tanker and tugboat for illegal STS oil transfer in Penang

10 Apr 2023

The Penang Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) on Friday (7 April) said it detained a tanker and a tug boat for conducting a ship-to-ship (STS) oil transfer without authorisation on 6 April. 

Its director Maritime Captain Abd Razak Mohamed said a MMEA patrol boat detected and detained the tanker MT Mekar Jaya and tugboat YKP Karishma that were in close proximity when it was on a routine patrol at 2.10pm at 0.16 nautical miles east of the waters near Persiaran Karpal Singh. Both vessels were detained during the operation. 

He said upon inspection, the Malaysia-flagged tanker was found to be operated by a eight-man crew aged 26 and 46 while the Thailand-flagged tugboat was operated by six crew members comprising four Indonesians and two Thai nationals, aged 35 to 51. All the crew members had proper identification documents with them. 

He added the tanker and tugboat committed a violation under the Merchant Shipping Ordinance 1952 for failing to inform the Marine Department director before conducting a STS oil transfer. 

The captains and the tugboat have been handed over to investigation officers of MMEA for further investigation.


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

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