Former tanker captain of Prime Splendour, Nguyen Duc Quang, on Friday (3 January) pleaded guilty to six counts of abetting to dishonestly receiving stolen property involving more than USD 4.5 million (SGD 6 million), according to The Straits Times.
In the largest gas oil theft prosecution in Singapore’s court, the 48-year-old Vietnamese received misappropriated gas oil worth more than USD 7.3 million (SGD 9.8 million).
The offences were committed between March 2016 and up until his arrest on 7 January 2018.
Quang started working for Vietnam-based Prime Shipping Corporation in 2009, where he later became Captain of several vessels including Prime Senator, Prime South and at the time of the crime, Captain of Prime Splendour in March 2016, said Deputy Public Prosecutor Stephanie Chew.
While onboard Prime Splendour which was stationed at Pulau Bukom, Quang received a call from a man identified as Nguyen Quoc Tuan, who had asked him to receive some misappropriated gas oil.
Quang then followed up with a call to former chairman of Prime Shipping Corporation, Tran Quang Tuan, who had instructed him to follow Nguyen Quoc Tuan’s instructions.
Under instruction, Quang paid a Shell employee USD 30,000 after receiving misappropriated gas oil on Prime Splendour; he later received USD 5,000 from another individual in Vietnam.
Following this, the stolen gas oil was sold off, where proceeds were split between Tran Quang Tuan, Nguyen Quoc Tuan, Nguyen Duc Quang and a fourth man – Nguyen Manh Cuong, former director of Petrolimex Singapore.
Quang said he had earned about USD 120,000 from various dealings involving misappropriated gas oil from Pulau Bukom between March 2016 and January 2018.
The trio, Tran Quang Tuan, Quoc Tuan and Nguyen Manh Cuong are still at large.
Quang will be sentenced on 14 January, in which six other similar charges linked to the remaining amount will be considered during sentencing.
In August 2017, a Shell representative filed a report saying the firm had lost about SGD 2.98 million worth of fuel in April that year.
To date, Quang is the third person to be sentenced at the Singapore court in relation to the Shell Pulau Bukom gas oil heist case. The first was the former Chief Officer of Prime South and the second is the former captain of Prime South.
Earlier coverage of the Shell Pulau Bukom oil heist case can be found below:
Related: Captain of “Prime South” jailed in Shell Pulau Bukom gas oil theft
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Related: Shell MGO bunker heist amount balloons to USD$142 million
Related: Shell MGO bunker heist update: Fresh charges issued at Singapore court
Related: Shell Singapore oil heist: More charges issued at court
Related: Shell Singapore oil heist: Nine charged offered bail
Related: Singapore bunker employee faces additional charges
Related: Intertek Singapore employee among Shell oil heist suspects
Related: Shell Singapore oil heist update: More individuals charged
Related: Shell Singapore oil heist: Shipowner should have conducted a charterer check
Related: Fuel syndicate busted at Singapore Shell Bukom
Related: Shell Singapore oil heist: Breakdown of stolen oil cargoes
Photo credit: Manifold Times
Published: 6 January, 2020
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U.S. Claims Register Summary recorded a total USD 833 million claim from a total 180 creditors against O.W. Bunker USA, according to the creditor list seen by Singapore bunkering publication Manifold Times.
Glencore purchased fuel through Straits Pinnacle which contracted supply from Unicious Energy. Contaminated HSFO was loaded at Khor Fakkan port and shipped to a FSU in Tanjong Pelepas, Malaysia to be further blended.
Individuals were employees of surveying companies engaged by Shell to inspect the volume of oil loaded onto the vessels which Shell supplied oil to; they allegedly accepted bribes totalling at least USD 213,000.
MPA preliminary investigations revealed that the affected marine fuel was supplied by Glencore Singapore Pte Ltd who later sold part of the same cargo to PetroChina International (Singapore) Pte Ltd.
‘MPA had immediately contacted the relevant bunker suppliers to take necessary steps to ensure that the relevant batch of fuel was no longer supplied. Further investigations are currently on-going,’ it informs.