Customs Dept intercepted smugglers of 230,000 liters of oil off Phuket


PHUKET, 12 July 2012  – The Customs Department has successfully intercepted an attempt to smuggle oil worth several millions of baht into the country.

Director of Investigation and Suppression Bureau Rakop Srisupaat said on Wednesday that the Customs Department has joined the Royal Thai Army Region 4 in arresting a Thai-national oil tanker called “Nok Naan Nam 16” or “Outside the Water 16”, carrying 230,000 liters of oil, worth 6.9 million baht.

The operation took place on July 9th off Phuket and saw the arrest of Myanmar-national Lin Oo, who was the captain of the tanker, along with 6 other Myanmar-national crew members.

During the initial investigation, all suspects said that a Thai national has employed them to carry out the smuggling.

Investigators have seized the oil tanker and the oil as well as pressed charges against all suspects.

Officials said that the confiscated oil tanker was reportedly owned by Thai, Malaysian and Myanmar nationals while the successful arrest was a result of 2 months of operations.

According to the Customs Department, 4 oil tankers with a total of 377,000 liters of smuggled diesel had been intercepted and confiscated in Phuket area during March-July this year.