Ports Police nabs suspected ship burglars
… Recovers loot
The Marine Operations Unit of the Ports Authority Police Command (PAPC) last Thursday apprehended five men alleged to have burgled a ship of 24 units of 20-litre gallons of marine paint and a roll of marine rope.
The ship the MV Anatoli was said to have been burgled by the suspects in the early hours of that day where she was berthed at Greenview Development Nigeria Limited (GDNL) Terminal, commonly called Dangote Jetty, at the Lagos Port Complex (LPC), Apapa, Lagos.
The PAPC Commissioner, Mrs Sherifat Disu-Olajoku, while addressing journalists yesterday at the Command’s ‘B’ Department, Marine, Elegbata Headquarters, paraded the suspects and narrated how officers of the unit were able to stop them from carting away the allegedly stolen goods.
She said: “There was a triple raised alarm from a ship at Dangote Jetty that some people are burgling the ship and removing things from there. So, they caught these guys in their wooden motorised boats with these exhibits, about twenty-four containers of marine paint, and a rope, the rope they used in anchoring their boat to the ship. So, our marine patrol boats caught them while they were running away with these lots, and apprehended them.”
The Police chief said that the suspects will be charged to court and the exhibits be released to its owner, after due Police and court procedures, even as she warned that the Ports Police, under her administration, will not condone any form of criminal activities in or around the ports.
The suspects, however, denied the allegation against them, claiming to be honest fishermen going about their business when they were beckoned on by foreigners aboard the ship to buy the gallons of paints.
According to the leader of the suspected gang, who identified himself as Femi Benjamin: “We are not thieves. We were passing by and saw two white men and two black men and they used torch to call us. They asked us if we will like to buy these things, but we told them we don’t know about the business but knows (sic) somebody who knows about it. So, we now went back to our side and asked people who know about it, and they told us to go ahead and that they’ll buy it. They now gave us money and we went back to that place and they released the paints to us. After that, nothing happened until when the Police came and saw us.”
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