Guyana: Authorities seize ship with smuggled fuel

Guyana: Authorities seize ship with smuggled fuel

“Jubilee”in the Demerara River

Authorities have taken control of a vessel that is suspected to have been involved in fuel smuggling. The ship – with the name Jubilee emblazoned – is reportedly linked to several business persons locally.  

According to sources, Jubilee reportedly purchased fuel from Trinidad and was intending to take it to Suriname. However, the customer in Suriname reportedly backed out of the purchase.

The vessel entered Port Georgetown around Friday but failed to disclose that it had fuel to Customs officials.  However, officials from the Guyana Energy Agency (GEA) boarded the vessel over the weekend.

The crew was unable to produce documents. Checks revealed that the vessel was carrying over 600,000 litres of gas. The crew reportedly claimed that the documents for the fuel were locked in the captain’s cabin and he was not around.

GEA reportedly sealed the tanks and pumps with Customs personnel placed on board.

The matter is now engaging the GEA board and the Guyana Revenue Authority, Kaieteur News was told.

The issue of smuggled fuel is big business to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars annually.

With up to 50 percent in taxes charged, smugglers have been having a field day selling to loggers, miners and residents in the hinterland.

A number of gas stations are said to be involved in the business too, with stolen GEA markers which indicate taxes have been paid, being used to legitimise the fuel at the pumps.

A key report ordered by Government had zeroed in on a number of prominent players

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