(Bloomberg) -- A shadow-fleet oil tanker that ran aground near Indonesia is having its cargo removed, the nation’s navy said.
Oil-spill booms have been deployed around the Liberty, a 23-year old vessel, as a precaution but there has been no actual spill, an Indonesian navy spokesman said. The ship, which ran aground more than a week ago, remains stuck.
The Liberty falsified its location back in October, telling digital tracking systems that it was off the coast of west Africa when in reality it was collecting Venezuelan oil, according to marine intelligence firms TankerTrackers.com Inc. and Kpler. The ship sails under the flag of Cameroon, a nation deemed “very high risk” by authorities.
A so-called dark fleet of tankers like the Liberty, which already existed before Russia invaded Ukraine, has ballooned since as Moscow sought ships that could help it to dodge western sanctions. Those ships have brought environmental risks into focus because details about who owns and insures them is often unclear.
Industry databases don’t provide a beneficial owner for the ship, but a firm called Skyward Management Corp., with an address in Kazakhstan, is listed as its technical manager. A call to a phone number for Skyward said the number was locked. An email to the firm wasn’t immediately returned.
©2023 Bloomberg L.P.