Indonesian navy seizes oil tanker wanted in Cambodia hinh anh 1Vessel MT Strovolos (Photo: AFP)
Kuala Lumpur (VNA) - Indonesia’s navy said it has seized an oil tanker that was wanted by Cambodian authorities on suspicion of stealing nearly 300,000 barrels of crude oil.

The Bahamian-flagged MT Strovolos was picked up on July 27 off the coast of Sumatra, it said, days after Phnom Penh issued a red notice on Interpol to seize the ship over claims it stole the nation's crude.

Indonesia's navy said it was questioning the crew of 13 Indians, three Bangladeshis and a trio from Myanmar at its base near Singapore.

The 183-metre (600-foot) tanker, sailing from Thailand to Indonesia's Batam island, had turned off its identification system and anchored illegally in the archipelago's waters, naval authorities said.

Its Bangladeshi captain could face up to a year in prison and a 14,000 USD fine if convicted on maritime violation charges, they added.

The tanker had been rented by Singapore's KrisEnergy for storage as part of Cambodia's recent bid to extract its own oil, authorities said.

But the company was unable to pay its debts and filed for liquidation in June, still allegedly owing money to the tanker crew, they added.

The two countries were working on a plan to return the oil to Cambodia, said Cheap Suor, director-general of petroleum at the Cambodian Ministry of Mines and Energy./.