During 9 – 15 Jul 19, one CAT 41 incident of armed robbery against ships was reported to the ReCAAP ISC. The incident involved the theft of scrap metal from barge Sung Fatt 36 towed by tug boat, Sung Fatt 31 on 16 Jul 19 in the westbound lane of the Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS) of the Singapore Strait. The location of the incident is shown in map below, and description tabulated in the attachment. This is the second time in 2019 that Sung Fatt 36 was boarded by perpetrators while underway in the westbound lane of the TSS of the Singapore Strait. The first incident occurred on 5 Mar 19 when 11 perpetrators boarded Sung Fatt 36 also towed by Sung Fatt 31 and stole some scrap metal from the barge.
As the risk of the abduction of crew in the Sulu-Celebes Seas and waters off Eastern Sabah is high as demonstrated by the abduction of 10 crew on 18 Jun 19, the ReCAAP ISC reiterates its advisory issued via the ReCAAP ISC Incident Alert dated 21 Nov 16 to all ships to reroute from the area, where possible. Otherwise, ship masters and crew are strongly urged to exercise extra vigilance while transiting the area, and report immediately to the Operation Centres of Philippines and Eastern Sabah Security Command (ESSCOM) of Malaysia. The contact details of the Operation Centres of Philippines and ESSCOM of Malaysia (updated by ReCAAP ISC on 3 Jan 19) are as follows: