TEHRAN, Iran — Naval forces of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards seize a ship “carrying smuggled fuel” in the Gulf and arrest four crew members, local media reports Saturday.
“More than 50,000 liters (13,000 gallons) of smuggled fuel were discovered” on board the ship, Fars news agency quotes the chief justice of the coastal Hormozgan province, Mojtaba Ghahramani, as saying.
He says the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps navy had “confiscated” the ship and “arrested four people” during the operation.
Neither the origin of the ship nor the date of the operation are immediately disclosed.
Ghahramani says the fuel would be redirected to the country’s “legal distribution network.”
The United States military has in recent weeks beefed up its presence in the Gulf after accusing Iran of seizing or attempting to take ships in the vital waterway.
On July 6, the US Navy said the Guards seized a commercial vessel in the Gulf, a day after it accused Iranian forces of two similar attempts off the coast of Oman.
Iran later said the vessel seized in the Gulf was carrying “more than one million liters (220,000 gallons) of smuggled fuel.”