BA RIA - VUNG TAU (VNS) -The Marine Police Zone 3 yesterday handed over to the Ba Ria- Vung Tau Coast Guard 11 Indonesian men arrested after they allegedly hijacked the Myanmar-flagged oil tanker Zafirah on Sunday.
The coast guard said the men were seized Thursday morning after they jumped into the sea to escape Marine Police Zone 3.
According to a Vietnam News Agency reporter based in Ba Ria–Vung Tau, the oil tanker Zafirah was attacked by the men at 3pm on Sunday while it was en route from Pasir Gudang to Miri Ports in Malaysia.
After it was hijacked in Indonesia waters, the pirates placed Sann Winnung, the Myanmar captain, and eight other crew members of the ship into the tanker's cabin before heading to Viet Nam waters.
At around 9:30 pm on Tuesday all of the nine crew members, who were drifting at sea on a lifeboat, were rescued by two Vietnamese fishing boats.
Shortly after receiving information sent from fishing boats, the Marine Search and Rescue Centre No 3 sent a ship to collect the Zafirah crew members and transfer them to the Ba Ria – Vung Tau Coast Guard.
After receiving an announcement from the international pirate-combating centre in Malaysia about the oil tanker in Viet Nam waters, the Marine Police Zone 3 also sent three ships to the area where the crew members were located.
After identifying the oil tanker, The Marine Police boarded the ship which had been re-painted with another colour.
The oil tanker was tugged to Vung Tau for further investigation. — VNS