The Joint Task Force (JTF) yesterday said it has uncovered and destroyed 134 illegal refineries, 34 large wooden boats, 36 pumping machines and 12 illegal oil dumps used by suspected thieves in the creeks of Bayelsa State.
The JTF also said that the locations of the illegal activities were Igbomotoru, Oyeregbene, Lasukugbene, Mbikiba and Ewesusho at Southern Ijaw, Brass and Nembe Local Government Areas of the state.
Media Coordinator of the JTF, Col. Onyema Nwachukwu, said in a statement yesterday that the 343 Regiment of Sector 2 raided the camps, where they discovered that some of the camps were being regenerated by the oil thieves.
He said: “A locally fabricated steel barge, containing product suspected to be illegally distilled Automated Gas Oil (AGO) was also intercepted by the patrol team around Nembe 2 flow station. The barge has been towed to Nembe 1 flow station for safe custody.”
Nwachukwu further said a wooden barge and two wooden boats, conveying unspecified quantity of adulterated Automated Gas Oil were impounded by troops of 29 Battalion patrolling the water ways of Alakri-Okirika axis in Okirika Local government of Rivers State.
According to him, the wooden barges have been recovered and secured at Peterside House boat.
The JTF spokesman noted that anti-oil theft squad of 3 Battalion, operating in Sector 1 also uncovered and shut down an illegal refinery at Orhobo village in Jesse community, Ethiope East Local Government Area of Delta State.
“During the operation, the squad also arrested a notorious oil theft suspect, Romeo Ogun, with the assistance of Nakus surveillance group at Odidi II, near Takula in Warri South-West Local Government Area of Delta State.”