Piracy reports for Gulf of Guinea, Dec 2015 – Jan 2016

NIGERIA: On 12 January, a merchant ship in the Lagos Secure Anchorage Area reported to local authorities of being followed by five men in a speedboat. The merchant ship soon after reported that they had seen two men in the rudder trunk and the unknown men had reportedly left the ship soon after their sighting. The ship was instructed to drop anchor and await further inspection.

CONGO: On 4 January, three robbers boarded an anchored vessel near position 04:47 S – 011:52 E, Pointe Noire Anchorage. Duty crewmen spotted the robbers on deck and raised the alarm. The robbers jumped overboard and escaped in their rowboat.

NIGERIA: On 27 December 2015, an unknown number of pirates attacked an anchored tanker near position 05:35 N – 005:00 E, approximately 10 nm west of Warri. The attack was reportedly repelled by an onboard detachment of Nigerian Navy personnel.

NIGERIA: On 24 December, seven gunmen in a speedboat attacked a passenger boat in the Brass Local Government Area of Bayelsa State. One person was killed and six others injured.

NIGERIA: On 21 December, pirates attacked three passenger boats in the Kula waterways in the Akuku-Toru local government area of Rivers State. Several dozen people are believed to have perished in the attack as many could not swim when the pirates forced them to jump in the river before stealing belongings.

DR CONGO: On 16 December, two robbers armed with knives in a boat boarded an anchored general cargo ship near position 05:50 S – 013:25 E, Matadi Anchorage. Five accomplices waited in the boat. The robbers were spotted by duty crewmen and the robbers fled. Nothing stolen. Incident reported to local authorities through
the local agents.

Source: Office of Naval Intelligence, Worldwide Threat to Shipping Report, 14 January 2016.

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Piracy & Maritime Security Incidents to 8th January 2014

It appears to be quiet off the coast of East Africa at the beginning of 2014, but not so much in Indonesia nor the West African littoral.

On 2 January, five pirates boarded a drifting gas carrier 55-nm west of Corsico in the Gulf of Guinea. The crew raised the alarm and the pirates fled. The master reported that there were several small craft without AIS in the vicinity.

On 3 January, pirates boarded the general cargo vessel San Miguel and kidnapped 3 crew members 20-miles NW of Bata, Equatorial Guinea.

On 3 January, armed robbers boarded an anchored chemical tanker in Belawan Anchorage, Indonesia while it was conducting loading operations. They took hostage the duty crewman then broke into the forecastle store room and stole ship’s property and escaped.

On 4-5 January, the Ukrainian captain and Greek engineer who were kidnapped by Nigerian pirates from the tanker Althea on 16 December 2013 were released.

On 6 January, robbers boarded an anchored chemical tanker in Belawan Outer Anchorage, Indonesia. The crew spotted the robbers and raised the alarm, whereupon the robbers fled in their small craft without stealing anything. The master alerted other ships in the vicinity via bridge-to-bridge radio.

On 7 January, armed robbers boarded a berthed container ship off Doula Port, Cameroon. The duty crewman noticed suspicious movements at the forecastle & informed the duty officer who raised the alarm. Seeing the crew response, the robbers escaped in a small craft.

On 7 January, robbers boarded an anchored chemical tanker in Gresik Inner Anchorage, Indonesia. They threatened the duty watch keeper & stole ship’s stores. The robbers fled when other crew members raised the alarm.

On 8 January, robbers boarded a berthed general cargo ship at Monrovia Port, Liberia. After hearing some noise, the duty watchman noticed a robber throwing ship’s properties overboard. Upon seeing the crew response, the robber jumped overboard and escaped. The master informed local authorities who sent a port security patrol to investigate. Port security personnel helped recover some of the stolen ship’s property that was adrift near the stern of the ship.

Source: United States Navy, Office of Naval Intelligence.

Piracy Reports 31 October to 7 November 2013

INDIAN OCEAN: On 6 November, a merchant vessel reported a pirate attack near position 05:40 S – 046:59 E, approximately 450 nm east-southeast of Mombasa, Kenya. The ship reported being attacked by five heavily armed pirates in one skiff, with the pirates reportedly exchanging gunfire with the ship’s embarked security team. The alarm was raised as the attack started, and the ship increased speed, activated the fire pumps, and started evasive maneuvers. The pirates reportedly moved away from the ship after the embarked security team returned gunfire.

INDIAN OCEAN: On 5 November, FGS NIEDERSACHSEN interdicted a pirate attack off Somalia. The PAG reportedly consisted of one whaler and skiff. There
were ten suspected pirates sighted in the boats along with numerous large fuel barrels. Upon closer surveillance, personnel in the boats were reportedly seen throwing two long ladders overboard before heading back to the beach.

INDONESIA: On 4 November, an anchored chemical tanker experienced an attempted boarding near position 03:54 N – 098:46 E, Belawan Anchorage. Duty crew spotted one boat with robbers attempting to board the tanker via anchor chain but alert crew thwarted the boarding. A second boat was hidden near the propeller and the crew could not chase them away with fire hoses. The propeller was turned on resulting in the robbers moving away. The robbers were spotted with some stolen hull anodes in their boat. Port Control informed of the incident.

INDIA: On 2 November, an anchored container ship experienced a boarding near position 21:40 N – 088:01 E, Sagar Anchorage. 15 armed robbers boarded the ship and were spotted by ship’s duty officer, who raised the alarm. The robbers were stealing ship’s stores and jumped overboard when the alarm was raised.

Source: United States Navy, Office of Naval Intelligence.

Piracy reports 24-31 October, 2013

It appears to have been a quiet week in the Gulf of Aden and the Gulf of Guinea, but not so much in Asian waters.

On 30 October, an underway chemical tanker experienced a boarding approximately 2.5 nm southwest of Outer Tuna Bouy, Kandla Anchorage. During routine rounds, a duty crewman noticed intruders boarding the vessel near the amidships storeroom. He immediately informed the duty officer who raised the alarm and mustered the crew. Upon seeing the crew response, the intruders fled the scene with stolen ship’s stores. Kandla Port Trust relayed details of the incident to the local Coast Guard office.

On 30 October, an underway asphalt tanker experienced a boarding in position 01:21 N – 104:24 E near the Horsburgh Lighthouse, Straits of Singapore. Five robbers armed with guns and knives boarded the ship unnoticed. They took hostage the Officer of the Watch and duty crewman and tied their hands. The pirates stole personal belongings and cash from crew cabins before escaping.

On 28 October, an anchored container ship experienced a boarding at position 21:50 N – 091:38 E in the Chittagong Anchorage. A duty crewman noticed five to six intruders at the poop deck while conducting routine rounds. He immediately informed the bridge and the alarm was raised. Upon hearing the alarm, the boarders jumped overboard and escaped with ship’s stores in their unlit boat.

On 27 October, an anchored chemical tanker experienced a boarding near position 03:56 N – 098:45 E, Belawan Outer Anchorage, Indonesia. Three skiffs approached the ship from the stern, forward and amidships. From the aft skiff, three pirates boarded the vessel and stole ship’s property. The crew noticed the boarders and raised the alarm, resulting in the pirates escaping.

On 26 October, an underway chemical tanker experienced an attempted boarding near position 03:40 N – 103:55 E approximately 35 nm east-southeast of Kuantan Port, Malaysia. Two small craft approached the tanker and tried to come alongside while underway. The Duty Officer raised the alarm and mustered the crew. The Master activated the Ship Security Alert System (SSAS), switched on all the deck lights, and steered a course away from land. Seeing the crew response, the boats aborted the boarding and moved away.

Maritime security report 27 Aug – 4 Sep

BANGLADESH: On 27 August, the anchored Marshall Islands-flagged container ship NADIR was boarded while at position 22:11N -091:42E, Chittagong Anchorage. Approximately 16 robbers in two boats approached the ship. Five robbers armed with long knives boarded the ship and began to lower ship’s stores into their boats. Duty officer noticed the robbers, raised the alarm and crew mustered. Seeing crew alertness the robbers escaped with stolen ship stores. Incident reported to the coast guard.

VIETNAM: On 28 August, the anchored Marshall Islands-flagged bulk carrier was boarded while at position 20:56N –107:19E, Cam Pha Anchorage. Six robbers boarded the ship via the anchor chain and hawse pipe by removing the cover and anchor lashing. They cut the padlock to the forecastle store room and stole ship’s properties. Duty officer noticed the robbers and raised the alarm. Upon hearing the alarm, the robbers escaped with stolen ship stores. Incident reported to the local police who boarded the ship for investigation.

VIETNAM: On 3 September, an anchored chemical tanker was boarded at 10:13 N–107:02 E, at the Vung Tau Anchorage. Six robbers disguised as fishermen boarded a chemical tanker at anchor. Duty crewman noticed the robbers and informed the bridge. The alarm was raised and the crew moved forward. Upon seeing the alert crew, the robbers jumped overboard and escaped with ship’s stores. All crew safe.

NIGERIA: On 4 September, an underway chemical tanker was fired upon at position 04:11N – 005:34E, 20 nm south of Pennington Oil Terminal. A speed boat approached the chemical tanker with intent to board. The duty officer raised the alarm, alerted the crew and made evasive maneuvers to prevent the boarding. The pirates tried to board the vessel using hooks attached to a rope. The on board security team fired warning shots at the boat and the pirates retaliated by returning fire. Facing resistance, the pirates aborted the attempt to board the vessel and moved away from the scene

Source: US Navy Office of Naval Intelligence.

Pirate attacks in the Gulf of Guinea, July 2013

Source: Office of Naval Intelligence (unclassified)

19 July: The Vanuatu-flagged offshore supply vessel C Viking (2197 GT) was boarded at the Usari Oil Field off the coast of Nigeria. Pirates looted the vessel and destroyed equipment on the bridge before disembarking.

18 July: The United States-flagged bulk carrier Liberty Grace (28836 GT) experienced an attempted boarding attempt in the Lome anchorage area off the coast of Togo. The crew of the bulk carrier used a spotlight, fire hoses and flares to repel the boarding attempt. A patrol boat from the Togo Navy arrived after the incident.

16 July: The Marshall Islands-flagged tanker Ocean Centurion (23328 GT) was hijacked at 05:29N – 001:38 E, approximately 46nm southeast of Lome, Togo. Armed pirates in 2 speed boats approached, boarded and hijacked the tanker while underway. They took hostage all the crew members, looted personal belongings, and ordered the Master to steer towards the Togo/Benin border. The pirates disembarked and escaped via speedboat, 12nm from the coastline. Two crew members were injured during the hijacking and were transferred ashore for medical treatment. A patrol boat from the Togo Navy arrived after the incident.

15 July: The Malta-flagged chemical tanker Cotton (23248 GT) was hijacked at 00:26 S – 008:51 E, approximately 13nm off Port Gentil, Gabon while underway. Approximately 25 gunmen armed with AK-47 assault rifles hijacked the tanker and took its crew hostage. The vessel was released, with all crew safe, on 22 July.

14 July: The Gabon-flagged landing craft Renovation (940 GT) was boarded while underway off Port Gentil, Gabon. Approximately 20 gunmen boarded the landing craft, looted the crew’s personal possessions and escaped.

10 July: An anchored chemical tanker experienced a suspicious approach at 06:17 N, – 003:21 E, approximately 5.4nm southwest of Fairway Buoy, Lagos. The tanker’s armed security team fired one warning shot when the small boat came within 50m of the vessel, causing the boat to depart the area.

7 July: Gunmen boarded a supply vessel at 04:24 N – 007:03 E, in the vicinity of the New Calabar River, Nigeria while the vessel was underway. The captain, chief engineer and a deckhand were reported to have been taken hostage.

5 July: An anchored bulk carrier was boarded at 06:26 N – 003:23 E at Lagos, Nigeria. Armed men were spotted by the boatswain who alerted the duty officer. The boatswain was wounded by gunfire before other crew members came to his assistance. The gunmen escaped by speedboat. The injured crew member was hospitalized for treatment.