Rivers State Command of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defense Corps NSCDC, has uncovered a tunnel in Ogali community, Eleme Local Government Area of the state used by oil thieves to siphon premium motor spirit (petrol).
The state NSCDC also arrested one suspected oil thief, Luka Famaah, involved in siphoning petroleum product from a pipeline belonging to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation.
Famaah, who was among 19 suspected oil thieves paraded in Port Harcourt, was arrested by officials of the corps while members of the syndicate are currently at large.
A hose was said to have been passed through the tunnel and connected to the broken pipeline, from where the suspects siphoned PMS.
The NNPC pipeline was said to be supplying fuel to Aba in Abia State, Enugu, and Makurdi in Benue State before the oil thieves breached it.
State Commandant of the NSCDC, Mohammed Haruna, who took newsmen round the spot where the tunnel was, explained that personnel of the corps discovered the tunnel at the weekend.
Also discovered were two 1,500 liters of storage tank filled with petrol and several smaller drums used by the suspects to load petrol.
Haruna described the oil thieves as a syndicate operating from a resident, adding that the syndicate had been in the illegal business for a long time.