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Authorities in Gibraltar Seize $75M Russian Superyacht



Authorities in Gibraltar Seize $75M Russian Superyacht

The superyacht Axioma has been detained at the port of Gibraltar after her owner, Russian billionaire Dmitry Pumpyansky, was added to U.S. and UK sanctions lists.

Pumpyansky is the owner of a Russian pipe-making conglomerate, OAO TMK, which provides high-grade materials to Russia’s oil and gas sector.

Operational control of the company has been transferred to its CEO, Igor Korytko, and the firm itself is not named on Western sanctions lists.

It has significant overseas operations, including divisions in the U.S., EU and UAE.

Axioma is a $75 million superyacht built in 2013, and she is also known by her project name, Red Square.

She has accommodations for 12 passengers and 20 crew members, and she normally operates in the Mediterranean. At 236 feet in length, she is the largest yacht ever built by a Turkish yard.

Authorities in the U.S. and in Europe continue to pursue the assets of other Russian billionaires, including additional yachts.

American investigators are said to have a particular interest in the $700 million megayachts Scheherazade, which is currently moored in Marina di Carrara, Italy.

The vessel has been dogged by rumors that it secretly belongs to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The yacht’s true owner is not known for certain, and her captain has denied that the vessel is linked to Putin. However, on Monday, an investigative team employed by Russian opposition politician Aleksei Navalny claimed to have found strong evidence: a copy of Scheherazade’s crew list.

They claim that the vessel’s crew is made up of Russian nationals, save for the captain – and a background check revealed that 10 of them had an employment affiliation with the FSO, Putin’s personal security organization.

“For some reason, they fly to Italy and work on a yacht,” said Maria Pevchikh, head of an investigative unit of Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation.

Others appear to be slipping beyond the reach of Western authorities.

The yacht Nord, which belongs to sanctioned steel magnate Alexei Mordashov, has been spotted transiting eastbound through the Singapore Strait.

The yacht Eclipse, which belongs to Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich, has arrived safely at the port of Marmaris, Turkey.

Abramovich’s other large yacht, Solaris, is currently moored at the Turkish port of Bodrum.

He is sanctioned by the UK, but Turkey has so far opted not to honor Western sanctions regimes against Russia.


–Maritime Executives


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Terminal Giant, APMT, Ocean Ambassadors Collaborate To Mark 2024 Children’s Day



Terminal Giant, APMT, Ocean Ambassadors Collaborate To Mark 2024 Children's Day

Terminal handling giant, the APM Terminal in collaboration with the Ocean Ambassadors Foundation OAF will host this year’s Children’s Day at Apapa, on Thursday 30, May 2024.

The  Ocean Ambassadors Foundation President, Mrs Violet Olaitan Williams disclosed this to newsmen in Lagos, while appreciating APM Terminals management, for sponsoring this year’s Children’s Day event. 

“This shows that truly, the 60 per cent youth population of this country has a future in the supply chain sub-sector of the marine and blue economy”, the OAF President, Olaitan Williams said.

“This gesture has marked out the terminal as a Children-friendly terminal, passionate about the sustainability of the industry,” she also said.

Ocean Ambassadors Foundation President, Mrs Violet Olaitan Williams

The OAF is a Catch Them Young Initiative with a grassroots approach to the maritime supply chain, a special provision for the Girl Child, who is under-represented in the maritime space.

She praised the APMT for being a functional multinational terminal, stressing that the management’s willingness to play its role in the nation’s progress and growth by aligning with the Federal government’s agenda for the marine and Blue economy ministry, should be emphasized and commended.

“We hope to partner with APMT for further engagements as regards the future of these students because they’ve exhibited their terminal as a Student-friendly one”, Olaitan further noted.

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Economic Saboteurs Must Be Brought To Justice!’ Says The CGC



Economic Saboteurs Must Be Brought To Justice!' Says The CGC

… Sets up Operation Whirlwind Against Smuggling of Petroleum Products!

The Comptroller-General of Customs (CGC) Adewale Adeniyi, on Thursday, 22 May 2024, in Abuja, inaugurated a workshop for a newly formed tactical team, Operation Whirlwind, aimed at combating the smuggling of Petroleum Products to the neighbouring countries.

“Economic saboteurs must be brought to justice,” he declared, in his opening remarks, emphasising the crucial role the team will play in protecting the nation’s economy from the adverse effects of smuggling petroleum products. 

 “Over the years, we have rebuilt the service to an enviable height, our revenue is increasing, and our targets have also increased. However, if we are not significantly impacting the Nigerian economy, then we must do better.”

The workshop at the Nigeria Customs Command and Staff College (NCCSC) is designed to equip the Operation Whirlwind team with the skills and knowledge necessary to effectively curb smuggling, particularly of petroleum products diverted to neighbouring countries.

CGC Adeniyi highlighted the significance of the workshop and the strategic importance of the new operation.

 “This is not a task force or the setting up of checkpoints,” he clarified. 

“This is an intelligence-driven operation that will support the political will at the highest level. Our dedication and loyalty must not be compromised. There will be serious consequences against whoever acts against this mission. There is zero tolerance for sabotage.”

Adeniyi stressed the need for collaboration and unity among the officers.

 “You were selected because you can do the job. Your coordinator’s record is impeccable, and your assignment can’t succeed without you working as a team. You are to complement the existing structure. You are not going as competitors; you are going to fight people sabotaging our efforts.”

The Director of Legal Services is scheduled to educate the team on the proper procedures for filing seizures, ensuring that all legal aspects of their operations are handled correctly.

The inauguration of Operation Whirlwind marks a significant step in Nigeria’s fight against smuggling and economic sabotage. As the team prepares to embark on their mission, the Comptroller-General of Customs asserts that the expectation is clear: to protect Nigeria’s economic interests with unwavering dedication and integrity.

It would be recalled that a Customs officer who once challenged smugglers at a border in the Northern axis of the country was allegedly dubbed insane, manhandled and taken to Abuja, to enable the petroleum product smuggling to continue unabated.

The setting up of Operation Whirlwind to some extent, might be a reflection of the fact that the racket that once, allegedly thrived under a past administration is finally over. 

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Navy Arrests 2 Vessels, 12 Crew Members Over Violation Of Maritime Law



Navy Arrests 2 Vessels, 12 Crew Members Over Violation Of Maritime Law

…MV RIG RUNNER and MV CELTIC EBENEZER Allegedly had AIS switched off at the time of arrest on April 2 and May 2 respectively

The Nigerian Navy, Forward Operating Base (FOB) FORMOSO, Baylesa, has arrested two motor vessels and 12 crew members over alleged violation of maritime laws.

The Commanding Officer, Capt. Murtala Rogo, disclosed this on Saturday while handing over the vessels and suspects to the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency NIMASA operatives in Bayelsa.

Represented by the Executive Officer, Commander M.A. Gada, Rogo said that the vessels, (MV) RIG RUNNER and MV CELTIC EBENEZER were arrested on April 2 and May 2 respectively.

“They were arrested by our patrol teams, around Madu Oilfield, off the coast of Bayelsa.

“Both vessels were found to be transiting with their automatic identification systems switched off, this is a violation of maritime law, ” he said.

The commanding officer said that the navy remained committed to the campaign against illegal bunkering, crude oil theft and all other forms of waterway crime.

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