By George Onah
Port-Harcourt â€” A Nigerian Naval Ship, NNS Pathfinder has arrested a Lagos-bound vessel for embarking on illegal bunkering of crude oil at Shell Petroleum manifold,Â Â Bille Cawthorn Channel in Degema Local Government Area of Rivers State.
Commanding Officer of the Naval ship, Commodore Yusuf Hinna, told journalists in Port Harcourt, yesterday, that the captain of the vessel was picked up in the ship while eight of his crew men escaped.
Hinna said the vessel sailed into Bonny waters from Lagos last week, four days after which it carried out surveillance on the facility of the oil company before engaging on stealing the crude oil.
He disclosed that the captain of the vessel would be handed over for prosecution after investiga-tions would have been completed to unravel those behind the stealing.
Captain of the ship (names withheld), told the press that he was conscious of the fact that the ship engaged in illegality but was, however, ignorant of the action and was only acting on instruc-tions.
Bunkering had reduced in the region since militants handed over their weapons before the end of the amnesty period.
However, pockets of crude bunkering are being reported in some communities of RiversÂ State.