Nigerian officials free 3 abducted Indian sailors

The Indians were sailors abducted aboard a fishing trawler at Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, a month ago
The Joint Task Force, JTF, comprising the Nigerian Navy and the Department of State Security Services, said it rescued three Indians abducted by a nine-man gang of kidnappers in Rivers State.

This is contained in a statement issued by the JTF Media Coordinator, Onyema Nwachukwu, in Yenagoa on Tuesday.

Mr. Nwachukwu gave the names of the Indians as Kanishk Johrar, Mohinder Saini, and Balwinder Singh. He said they were sailors abducted aboard a fishing trawler at Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, a month ago.

The spokesperson said that their captors moved them into the shores of the Nigerian waters and demanded $1 million (N160 million).

He said the JTF tracked the abductors to their hide out at Abissa, a small fishing port in Akuku’ Toru Local Government Area of Rivers and arrested five suspects.

In another statement, the spokesperson said the JTF Operation Pulo Shield uncovered 12 illegal oil distillation camps in Ughelli South and Warri South-West Local Government Areas of Delta.

He said the JTF uncovered 28 cotonu boats, 24 underground storage tanks containing about 70,000 litres of illegally distilled automated gas oil (AGO),  547 steel drums, and five surface tanks.

The others are 22 plastic tanks filled with illegally refined AGO, five speed boats loaded with 150 drums of refined AGO, 47 fabricated steel pots, and 37 ovens used for cooking illegally sourced crude oil.

He added that the 10 suspects arrested were currently at the JTF headquarters for further investigations.

Mr. Nwachukwu further said that the troops also arrested seven other suspects for pipeline vandalism and oil-related crimes.

He said the troops also discovered and scuttled one wooden boat, six illegal crude oil dumps and 20 metal drums containing illegally refined AGO.

The spokesperson said the 10 days operation started on January 20 and ended February 2, adding that the 17 suspects were undergoing preliminary investigations.


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