Chinese fishing vessel attacked and hijacked by pirates; one reported dead

By Piracy

Officials reported the death of one and three others as missing following the hijacking of a Chinese fishing vessel by pirates in Togolese waters.

According to various reports the pirates stabbed one of the crew members which subsequently led to his death.

The ship in question, Lu Rong Yuan Yu 917 had 22 Ghanaians and six Chinese crew members on board at the time.

Lt. Commander Victor Fianko, Commanding Officer of the Ghana Navy Ships, commented that the Ghana Navy is working closely with their Togolese colleagues in order to find the three missing crew members.

Ghana Navy

Image of Ghana Navy

Lt. Commander Fianko described the situation by further adding that on Tuesday, his outfit received notice that the hijacked ship had been abandoned by the pirates on board and it was heading towards Ghanaian waters.

The Navy immediately sent out a dispatch to the eastern Ghana boarder where they managed to intercept the ship.

Upon carrying out a detailed search of the ship, Ghana Navy officials retrieved 10 homemade bombs, 10 explosives, two rifles, two navigational charts covering the cost of Benin to Tema, three explosive fuses, torchlight, an empty cartridge, one lighter and a handbag which contained the mentioned explosives.

“The Command Operation officer reported that one of the crew members is dead and his body is currently at Togo pending autopsy while three of the other crewmembers are believed to be missing,” he added.

This is the second instance in these past three weeks that the Ghana Navy has had to deal with a case involving a hijacked vessel.

On the 18th of January, Ghana Navy officials arrested eight Nigerians pirates in relation to hijacking an oil tanker in Nigerian waters.

The ship which at the time was carrying a cargo of roughly 1,500 tonnes of crude oil was later on navigated into Ghanaian waters by the pirates in question but the vessel owner sent out an alert which led to their arrest. The suspects are now in Police custody.