MMEA Tanjung Sedili maritime zone director Capt Mohd Zulfadli Nayan said the vessel, a type of very large crude carrier (VLCC), was spotted 13 nautical miles off Tanjung Siang in the eastern side of Johor at 2.15pm on Thursday (Aug 20).
He said a patrol unit approached the 245m-long ship and found 22 people, including the ship master and crew, aged 19 to 61.
They were of various nationalities from Ukrainians and Chinese to Myanmars, Russians and Georgians, he said.
“This is the fourth illegal anchoring arrest we have made this month.
“I have, time and again, reminded ship owners and operators to obtain the proper permits from the Marine Department before anchoring or carrying out activities in Malaysian waters,” he said in a statement on Friday (Aug 21).
Capt Mohd Zulfadli added that the case was being investigated under Section 491B(1)(L) of the Merchant Shipping Ordinance 1952 for failing to inform the Marine Department director of the ship’s arrival, which carries a fine of up to RM100,000 or imprisonment of not more than two years upon conviction.