Navy Smashes Cross- Border Petrol Smuggling Syndicate

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Navy Smashes Cross- Border Petrol Smuggling Syndicate, Recovers 28,300 Litres of Products

By Chiemelie Ezeobi

In line with its zero tolerance to maritime illegalities within the nation’s territorial waterways, the Forward Operation Base (FOB), Badagry of the Nigerian Navy (NN) has smashed a cross-border petrol smuggling syndicate and recovered 28,300 litres of products.

The syndicate were caught in the act while smuggling those petroleum products across the nation’s waterways to Benin Republic, where they will sell at near cut-throat prices to their long list of clientele.

Although the suspects jumped ship and fled immediately they sighted the naval personnel, the Navy not just recovered the 25 litres of 90 jerry cans of petroleum products but also impounded the wooden boats carrying it.

Despite the hot pursuit at the Pashe creek in Badagry area of Lagos State, the suspects fled and left behind the smuggled products.

The Commander, Forward Operating Base of the Navy in Badagry, Captain Simon Dogo, who confirmed the incident to journalists said the seizure was made after the vandals abandoned the boat on sighting a naval team and fled.

Dogo said: “My patrol teams went on patrol at Pashe creek when they saw perpetrators trying to load the petroleum products in a boat for transfer to Benin Republic.

“The perpetrators, on sighting the naval team, jumped into water and fled.

“We intercepted the boat and we discovered that 90 of over 200 of the jerry cans had been filled with petrol.”

Dogo said that the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok Ibas, had zero tolerance for economic sabotage and the navy was carrying out his directives in that direction.

He said smuggling activities had reduced drastically in Badagry, adding that the Navy was ready to fight pipeline vandalism and oil theft to an end. The commander warned perpetrators of illegal acts to seek legitimate means of livelihood or face the wrath of the law.