The Nigerian Navy in Port Harcourt has arrested three men for allegedly selling suspected adulterated diesel to unsuspecting motorists in Rivers.
The suspects, the navy said on Thursday in Port Harcourt, were arrested while allegedly transporting the petroleum product stored inside two 33,000 litres tanker trucks.
Capt. Adegoke Ebo, Executive Officer, Nigerian Navy Ship (NNS) Pathfinder, Port Harcourt, spoke during handover of the two trucks to the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corp (NSCDC).
According to him, the suspects were arrested following intelligence by detectives of the Operation Delta Safe (OPDS) on the illicit operations of the three men.
“The trucks with registration numbers, AKU 66 YJ and BSA 142 XJ, were seized on September 18, 2018 by OPDS patrol team at Elele and Akpajo areas in the state.
“The trucks laden with illegally refined petroleum products were arrested alongside the three suspects.
He said the trucks were later towed to NNS Pathfinder for safe custody, while the suspects were taken to OPDS headquarters and handed over to NSCDC in Bayelsa.
“So, in line with the directives from OPDS, the trucks and product are hereby handed over to NSCDC in Port Harcourt.
“The Chief of the Naval Staff, Vice-Adm. Ibok Ete-Ibas has reiterated zero tolerance to all forms of illegalities in the nation’s maritime space.
“We advise criminals to have a rethink as we will not relent in our efforts to rid all criminal activities in our area of responsibility,” he warned.
Ebo said the Navy was passionate to ending all forms of illegalities in the nations maritime environment, particularly in the Niger Delta.
He warned oil thieves, pirates, illegal bunkerers and other criminals to vacate the state or face arrest and prosecution.
Receiving the trucks, Augustine Egbeyemi, Assistant Commandant of NSCDC in Rivers promised that the command would investigate the matter and prosecute anyone found culpable in the crime.
(Editing by Peter Ejiofor)