2 armed robberies at Batangas port within interval of 7 days

by Warren Ryan Revoltar

Two incidents of armed robbery, whereas perpetrators demonstrated violence toward the crew of the ship with a knife occurred within an interval of seven days in Batangas.

Anchored in Batangas on August 14 at 1000 hours, the perpetrators of the first incident entered the cabin of the general steward. The perpetrator, who pointed a long knife at the general steward to stole his personal belongings, left the ship immediately through the mooring lines in a small unmarked blue motor banca stationed at the astern of the ship.

Similarly, on August 20 at 2021 hours at 3 km southeast of the first incident, the same incident happened, whereas the duty crew, who suffered a cut on his right palm, was attacked by a perpetrator with a knife when he was performing a roving watch at the main deck. The crew tried to stop the attack, however, he accidentally grabbed the blade of the knife. He was evacuated and sent to a hospital for treatment.

With this, the Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy and Armed Robbery against Ships in Asia (ReCAAP ISC), concerned about the occurrence of the earlier mentioned incidents, urged the authorities to enhance surveillance, increase patrols, and respond promptly to incidents reported by ships in order to arrest and prosecute the perpetrators. Also, the ReCAAP ISC strongly advised the shipmasters and crew to exercise vigilance, maintain a constant look-out for suspicious boats in the vicinity and report all incidents immediately to the authorities, adding that is also very important for the crew not to engage in a confrontation with perpetrators.

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