Singapore arrests 10 tugboat crew over suspected fuel thefts

Singapore authorities have arrested 10 men who were working as crew aboard two tugboats under suspicion of involvement in the theft of marine gas oil (MGO) from one of the tug’s employers.

The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) cooperated with officers from the Police Coast Guard in the investigation of the illegal sale of MGO. Six crew members from a Singapore-registered tugboat and another four crew members of a foreign-registered tugboat were arrested on August 4th. They were charged with suspected involvement in an illegal transaction at sea off Southern Tuas Basin, Singapore.

The Singapore Police Force said that the crew members of the Singapore-registered tugboat were believed to have misappropriated the MGO without their company’s knowledge. They have been charged with selling the fuel to the crew members of a foreign-registered tugboat.

During a search of the tugboat and arrest of its crew, the police seized S$8,000 (US$5,800), which were believed to be the proceeds of the sale. The vessel was impounded by the police.

Each of the six men from the Singapore-registered tug face up to 15 years imprisonment as well as fines. The four men working aboard the foreign tugboat have been charged with dishonestly receiving stolen property and face up to five years imprisonment and/or fines.