Nigerian pirates have reportedly taken hostage five crew members after they attacked a Liberia-flagged 6,436 dwt chemical tanker, MT Sampitiki, in the Niger Delta coast, about 30 miles off the coast of Bonga.
The attack came few hours after the news broke of the release of two crew members kidnapped on February 23 from Bourbon Liberty 251, a French oil services company vessel, off the Nigerian coast.
The two, a Nigerian and Russian, who were said to be in good health on their release, were part of the 12-member crew on board during the attack. The remaining 10 were unharmed.
A United Kingdom-based security broker, Asket, said the attack, which lasted for about four hours on March 26, was executed by no fewer than eight pirates who boarded vessel after midnight and later escaped with the hostages.
Asket said that though some equipment was damaged, none of the remaining crew members was reported injured. The tanker, which was initially from Port Harcourt to the port of Luba in Equatorial Guinea, later sailed to the port of Lagos, according to AIS data. READ MORE OF THIS STORY