April 21, 2024

NSCDC discovers 10 illegal refineries with 500,000litres of crude oil

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Ilenre Irele

The Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC has said it had discovered 10 illegal refineries with over 500,000 litres of crude oil and arrested five suspects in Odagwa Community, Etche Local Government Area of Rivers State.

The suspected oil thieves, according to NSCDC, had vandalised the wellhead of Heirs Energies/NNPC Ltd JV located around Imo River II field in Etche, and used different pipes to siphoned crude oil while processing same within the vicinity.

Speaking, the Spokesperson of NSCDC in Rivers State, Olufemi Ayodele, explained that the feat was achieved by the Commandant General’s Special Intelligence Squad based on credible intelligence.

Ayodele further said the illegal refining site had over 50 illegally constructed reservoirs, assuring that NSCDC will continue in the fight against crude oil theft, illegal mining, illegal dealings in petroleum products amongst others across the country.

He thanked the Commandant General for the commissioning of the Special Intelligence Squad, who he said have been working across the federation to combat the menace of illegal dealings in petroleum products, crude oil theft, vandalism of railway lines, amongst others

He said, “The Commandant General of the NSCDC, Dr Ahmed Abubakar Audi, has said that all acts of economic sabotage should be fought to stand still as suspects arrested would face the full wrath of the law irrespective of their sponsors, hence he gave a marching order to the Special Intelligence Squad to be more thorough and results oriented in their operations.

“Based on credible intelligence the Squad swung into action and uncovered 10 illegal refineries in a forest located around Odagwa Community in Etche Local Government Area of Rivers State where five suspects were caught in the act of illegally refining of crude oil.

“About 10 different cooking pots of 50,000 litres capacity were seen with one pumping machine, tanks, 25 rubber hoses used for pumping crude oil and many long galvanized pipes with unquantified litres of crude oil and illegally refined AGO stored in six large reservoirs and other 20 smaller reservoirs dugged in the ground.

“The names of the suspects arrested who have now being handed over to the Rivers State Command for further investigation and possible prosecution are:
Favour Chukwu (M) 29 years, Desmond Umeh (M) 25 years, Godwin Amos (M) 22years, Bineace Galion (M) 38years and Goodnews David (M) 23 years.

“These unscrupulous elements who tapped into the oilwell head of Heirs Energies and NNPC Ltd located around Imo River II oilfield at Odagwa in Etche, through different channels, inserted their galvanized pipes and siphoned crude oil while processing same within the premises without recourse.

“The uncovering of this massive illegal oil bunkering site is a landmark achievement and an indication that the NSCDC as the lead agency in the protection of all critical national assets and infrastructure will continue to combat crude oil theft with a renewed vigour even as we work in synergy with sisters security agencies to salvage the nation’s economy from saboteurs.

“Let me reassure you that thorough investigation has commenced to unravel those behind the scene while all suspects arrested in connection with this act of vandalism and crude oil theft would be charged to Court of competent jurisdiction and their sponsors or cartels would be trailed and brought to book without compromise.”

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