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Barge found but tug still missing in Malaysia, hijack suspected

A barge being towed by the 2004-built tug, Manyplus 12, which went missing on 13 June  between Sibu and Port Klang in Malaysia has been found with the 11 crew from the tug.

 

Reports by the Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy and Armed Robbery against Ships in Asia (ReCAAP) indicate that the vessel was due to arrive at Port Klang on 13 June, but lost contact 61.37 nm west of Tanjung Datu, Borneo, on 9 June.

Manyplus 12 was towing a box barge, Hub 18, loaded with 138 containers, which was recovered yesterday 100 nm northwest of the Malaysian city of Kota Kinabalu, with all its cargo, as well as the 11 crew of Indian, Myanmar and Malaysian nationals.

Authorities speculate that this may be a case of a “phantom ship”, a piracy method common Southeast Asia, in which vessels are hijacked, repainted and resold or traded under a different moniker.

Posted 23 June 2014

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