Southeast Asia hijackers caught red-handed

Incident Update Sun Birdie (29 Jan 15)

RecAAP reports that the MT Sun Birdie, presumed hijacked on January 28th, has been successfully located by the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency off Malaysia. 

The tanker, laden with Marine Fuel Oil, lost contact with owners on January 28th at around 2200 LT. The MMEA was informed of its last known position and deployed vessels along with the Royal Malaysian Navy.

On January 29th at around 2253 LT, the MMEA successfully located the ship around 18nm NE of Tanjung Penewar, Malaysia. The MMEA detained the ship’s crew and seven pirates for questioning. Two further pirates jumped overboard and were rescued by a passing ship, the Challenger Premier, and will be handed over to the MMEA.

The quick rescue of the Sun Birdie demonstrates that while piracy in the region is still a major issue, timely reporting of an incident combined with a coordinated response can lead to a satisfactory conclusion for everyone concerned. Except the pirates.