Two foreign vessels detained for illegal anchoring

Illegal act: One of the ships detained by the Johor MMEA near Tanjung Penawar.

KOTA TINGGI: Two foreign tankers have been detained for illegally anchoring here.

Johor Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) director First Admiral Nurul Hizam Zakaria said both ships, one registered in Liberia, West Africa and the other in Vietnam, were found anchored about 15 nautical miles (27.7km) north-east of Tanjung Penawar.

He said MMEA detained the first ship, with 22 crew members, on Thursday.

“The second ship was located nearby and was detained on Saturday. It had 27 crew members from Vietnam.

“Crew members from both ships were travelling with valid documents.

“Both ship captains also informed that they were unaware that they were anchoring in Malaysian waters and did not have clearance to anchor in Malaysian waters,” he said in a statement here yesterday.

The act is an offence under Section 491B(1)(L) of the Merchant Shipping Ordinance 1952 and is punishable with a fine of not more than RM100,000 or jail of not more than two years, or both upon conviction.

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