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14 suspects arrested as Navy uncovers illegal refining site in Rivers

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Illegal refinery

Men of the Nigerian Navy have uncovered illegal oil bunkering activities perpetuated in Elem Krakama community in the Degema Local Government Area of Rivers State as 14 persons were also arrested in connection to the illegal activities.

The Navy also disclosed that an illegal oil refining site with a capacity to produce over 9.6 million litres of Automotive Gas Oil popularity called diesel per day was uncovered.

The operation led by the Commander, Nigerian Navy Ship, Pathfinder, Commodore Desmond Igbo, on Thursday, also led to the discovery and seizure of three wooden boats with a storage capacity of 70 metric tons.

Igbo told journalists that the suspects were siphoning crude from a tapped oil wellhead from the Oil Mining Lease (OML-18) operated by the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited in the area.

He said the wellhead was badly compromised by the suspected oil thieves.

Igbo, who expressed shock at the wide-scale economic sabotage going on in the location, noted that the site has 16 cooking pots with the capacity to contain 6,000 litres of diesel each while maintaining that the Navy will not relent in ensuring that illegal oil refining activities become a thing of the past.

He stated, “This is Elem Krakama in Degema LGA of Rivers State. We have come here to ensure that this oil stealing will not continue.

“We have about 16 cooking pots and some of them contain about 6,00 litres. It is very huge, as you can see where they are tapping it from right from the oil wellhead.

“It comes out the way water comes from the tap. We have made arrests, we arrested about 14 of them in the act of stealing the crude and also illegally refining this crude.

“Behind me is oil well head 15 belonging to OML 18, of NNPCL. You can see a very big 14-inch hose connected illegally to this oil well head 15.

“They are transferring it to this big wooden boat also known as the Cotonou boat.

“The boats contain 70 metric tons of crude oil, the crude is still there they will connect it to the reservoirs through the 4-inch hose from there they will start cooking it.”

Continuing, the NNS Pathfinder boss said, “We have four of these wooden boats in this camp. The cooking pots also contain about 1.5 million AGO. This is not good for our country not good for the economy.”

 

 

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