Army arrests 18 suspected oil thieves, destroys 167 illegal refineries 

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The Defence Headquarters of the Nigerian Army has disclosed that its troops on Operation Delta Safe and Operation Dakatar Da Barawo, have destroyed not fewer than 167 illegal refineries and arrested 18 suspected crude oil thieves in Niger Delta.

The Director of Defence Media Operations, Major General Bernard Onyeuko, made this known on Thursday in Abuja while briefing journalists on the progress of the operations by the troops between April 28 and May 19.

Major Onyeuko explained that the troops destroyed 17 illegal refineries with five wooden boats, 89 storage tanks, 59 ovens, 12 dugout pits, six pumping machines, five trucks, and two outboard engines and two weapons, while they recovered a total of 778,500 litres of crude oil, 840,300 litres of Automotive Gas Oil (AGO) and 625 litres of Dual Purpose Kerosene (DPK).

The arrested suspects have been handed over to the appropriate authorities for further investigation, he added.

Major Onyeuko further explained that the troops in conjunction with Nigerian Drug Law enforcement Agency (NDLEA), also arrested some drug suspects during raid operations in their hideout in Effurun in Urwie Local Government Area of Delta State.

“Items recovered from them include 2.460kg of cannabis, 0.0703kg of cocaine, 0.054kg of meth, 0.067kg of loud, 0.654kg of cannabis seeds, one tablet of molly, one pump action with 15 cartridges, a Toyota Hilux and Mercedes Benz car.” 

Similarly, he said that the troops on Operation Dakatar Da Barawo also destroyed 150 illegal refineries with 59 ovens, 67 metal storage tanks and four wooden Cotonou boats.

According to him, the operations also led to the recovery of one Yamaha engine, one generator, three pumping machines, 20,000 litres of kerosine, 1.6 million litres of AGO and 2.05 million litres of crude oil.

He said that all recovered items have been handed over to the appropriate authorities for further action.

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