The Economic And Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Port Harcourt’s Zonal Office has commenced investigations into the activities of twenty nine (29) suspected oil thieves alleged to be involved in illegal oil bunkering.
A statement by EFCC spokesman, Mr. Tony Orilade listed the suspects as Dickson Friday, Ibe Emeka, Saviour Friday, Akuro Clinton, Abraham Azuwa, Stephen Daniel, Sunday Abedingo, Samuel Smubai, Anazodo Emmanuel Ejike, Daminabo Apiah, Benneth Sobere, Emmanuel Gala, Ephraim Utono, Michael Jeremiah, Ibitimmy Azan, Rufus Animi, Atubi Precious.
Others are Ojuboworima Ebenezer, Bobo Banigo, Habibu Mohammed, Yobo Okwata, Tammy Ibibo, John Tamumodiepiriye, Jack Joel, Ubiakamre Lucky, Nisidibe Adolfus, Victor Francis, Omotola Timothy and Okojie Charles Ehis.
They were handed over to the EFCC by Nigerian Navy Ship JUBILEE (NNS JUBILEE) in Ikot- Abasi, Akwa Ibom State on Friday alongside four vessels comprising one Barge and three wooden boats, the statement added.
The statement said further: “Other items handed over to the EFCC include a Truck laden with products suspected to be illegally refined and 306 drums laden with products suspected to be Automotive Gas Oil, (AGO).
“The Naval Handing over Officer, Lt. J. Mohammed said that the suspects were arrested between May 3, 2019 and May 6, 2019 at different locations.
“While some of the arrests were made on waterways, others were made on land.
“According to Lt. Mohammed, a segment of the Nigerian Navy Team arrested 22 out of the 29 suspects around Bolo Creek near Onne, Rivers State on May 3, 2019.
“They were arrested with 4 Vessels laden with indeterminate quantity of products suspected to be illegally refined AGO.
“Three of the suspects were arrested along Hospital Road, Ikot- Abasi, Akwa- Ibom State and the remaining four suspects were crew of a Tugboat: MV LADY ESTHER arrested in the course of towing a confiscated Barge in Onne, Rivers State.
“Principal Detective Superintendent Olayinka Macaulay who received the suspects and vessels on behalf of the EFCC, assured the Naval Handing over Officer and his team of diligent investigation and possible prosecution of the suspects as soon as investigations are concluded”.