Troops of Operation Delta have apprehended 24 suspected oil thieves and recovered 9,856.1 barrels of crude oil, 339 million litres of illegally refined diesel as well as 500,000 litres of Kerosene in Delta State.
The operatives also recovered 14 pumping machines, two speed boats and 13 outboard engines from the suspects.
Disclosing this in Abuja on Thursday, during the weekly briefing on ongoing security operations by the armed forces, the Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Maj. Gen. John Enenche said the troops equally immobilized six illegal refining sites, 11 boats, 52 Gee Pee tanks, 102 metal tanks, 17 dugout pits and 45 ovens during various operations held between January 14-20, 2021.
He stated, “Troops of Operation Delta Safe have continued with the aggressive fight against economic sabotage in the zone progressively. Between 14 to 20 January 2021, troops of Operation Delta Safe conducted anti-crude oil theft operations as well as other anti-illegal maritime activities.
“In the course of their operational activities, six illegal refining sites, 11 wooden boats, 52 Gee Pee tanks, 102 metal tanks, 17 dugout pits and 45 ovens were immobilized.
“Also, 24 suspects were arrested while 14 pumping machines, two speed boats and 13 outboard engines were recovered. Additionally, a total of 9,856.1 barrels of stolen crude oil and 1,339,000 litres of illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil, as well as 500,000 litres of Dual Purpose Kerosene, were recovered.”
The DHQ further said that the Nigerian Navy Ship Delta on January 14 conducted an operation in conjunction with the Forward Operating Base Escravos during which the team deactivated seven illegal refining sites at Egwa Creek, Warri South-West LGA.
“The illegal refining site had seven refining units (ovens), 16 metal storage tanks, 84,000 litres and 105,000 litres of products suspected to be illegally refined AGO and stolen crude oil, respectively,” Enenche disclosed.
In the North Central zone, he said the troops of Operation Safe Haven arrested Messrs Mantau Nabo and Victor Jonathan with one locally fabricated AK-47 rifle and one empty magazine concealed in a tricycle otherwise known as “Keke Napep”.
The suspects attempted to sneak the items past a checkpoint at Dong Junction in Bassa LGA of Plateau State on their way from Jebbu Miango en route Jos town.
The troops also nabbed one Stephen Yaro, from Kigwanu village in Kauru LGA of Kaduna State, found with a locally made rifle concealed under his motorcycle seat.