Libya’s Special Deterrence Force arrest four oil executives over offshore fraud

Days after Libya loaded its first tanker from a new floating storage platform in the offshore Bouri oilfield, Special Deterrence Force had detained four senior oil executives over fraud related to the project.

The Special Deterrence Force (SDF), based in Tripoli, on Monday arrested four senior executives from Mellitah Oil and Gas, which operates the Bouri field in a joint venture between the National Oil Corporation and Italy’s Eni, according to Libya media reports.

“The four abused their power and wasted public money in the acquisition of the 120,000-ton Gaza storage tanker, which is part of the US$425-million floating storage and offloading vessel (FSO).” Explained the SDF.

The SDF investigators said they had referred the four arrested senior oil executives to the Tripoli Attorney General’s Office.

“The contract price of the Gaza was inflated, and claim that an 11-month delay in the delivery of the vessel was not reimbursed in line with a penalty clause for five percent of the contract value.” The SDF claims in the arrest warrant.

The Gaza floating platform arrived in May 2016 and began pumping crude in January 2017. The new platform replaces an ageing Italian platform.

On Monday, the new FSO loaded its first tanker from the Gaza platform, which was constructed in South Korea.

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