According to Mohammad Rastad, Britain’s ‘Stena Impero’ oil tanker had been captured by the Iranian military forces with a warrant from the Judiciary, and the documents and evidence of the tanker’s violations have been submitted to the court.
The judicial authority, namely the court of Bandar Abbas, is hearing the UK tanker’s case and will issue its ruling considering the oil tanker’s maritime violations, he added.
The deputy minister also dismissed any link between Stena Impero’s case and the British seizure of Iranian supertanker Adrian Darya off the coast of Gibraltar.
The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Navy captured Stena Impero on July 19 at the request of the Ports and Maritime Organization of Iran’s office in the province of Hormozgan.
The UK vessel had switched off its GPS locator, in contravention of international regulations, and was sailing into the Strait of Hormuz in a wrong traffic pattern. The British tanker was entering the strait from the southern route which is an exit path, increasing the risk of an accident.
Moreover, Stena Impero had not heeded any of the warnings from the Iranian Ports and Maritime Organization. An informed source said the vessel was also polluting the Persian Gulf water heavily by dumping crude oil residue.