SBU exposes illegal exploitation of state-owned ship that resulted in detention of Ukrainian seamen in Libya
SBU officers exposed the illegal exploitation of a leased state-owned vessel that resulted in detention of 14 Ukrainian sailors in Libyan waters.
The boat “Ruta” owned by the Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine in 2003 was leased to a foreign shipping company. Law enforcers found that in February 2017 the criminals forged license and registration documents for ship authorisation right, which enabled them to illegally sail the ship under the Ukrainian flag and to organize the illegal export of fuel from Libya, in violation of the UN Resolution.
In April 2017, the ship and the crew (14 citizens of Ukraine) were detained by the Coast Guard of the Navy of Libya.
In the framework of open criminal proceedings, the operatives of SBU Main Directorate of economic counter-intelligence protection of the state's interests established the organizers of the deal. In order to document the fact of abuse of authority by the company's officials, SBU officers together with the National Police in Odessa searched Odesa office of the offshore company operating the ship.
The discovered materials will facilitate the return of the detained crew and the “Ruta” ship, in parallel saving Ukraine from international sanctions that would have been installed otherwise, adversely affecting international image of the state.
The SBU, together with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Infrastructure and other agencies, make every effort to release the seamen as soon as possible.
Pre-trial investigation is under way.
SBU Press Centre
For the Attention of the SBU Head