Pirates hijack tanker in Malacca Straits, cargo stolen

Another small tanker was hijacked and its cargo stolen in the Straits of Malacca at the weekend.

The Singapore-registered Ocean Energy was bound from Singapore to Myanmar on 2 May when it was attacked by eight, armed pirates.

ReCAAP Information Sharing Centre said that eight pirates armed with guns boarded the tanker at around 2130 hrs and ordered the tanker to anchor off Port Dickson where a barge came alongside.

The Master and crew of the Ocean Energy were locked-up while 2,023 tonnes of gas oil was discharged onto the barge.

The pirates damaged the ship’s communications equipment, stole its Iridium satellite phone, and the crew’s cash and phones before leaving the vessel at around 0430 hrs on 3 May.

The vessel’s crew managed to contact to the company’s security officer an hour later and returned to port. None of the crew were injured in the attack.

It is the fifth attack on a small tanker in Southeast Asian waters this year with aim of stealing the vessel’s cargo.

“Whilst the crew was not harmed, the criminal act of holding them under threat, stealing their cash and personal belongings; and the vessel’s cargo is unacceptable,” ReCAAP said.

Copyright Ships & Ports Ltd. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit given to www.shipsandports.com.ng as the source.