Colonel Gholam-Hossein Hosseini, head of the PR department of the IRGC unit in Bushehr in southern Iran, said on Sunday that the eight crew members of the seized vessel had been detained and handed over to local authorities for legal proceedings.
The ship, he added, was intercepted thanks to “effective intelligence and operational monitoring” in the northern part of the Persian Gulf and escorted to the port city of Bushehr.
Five other smaller vessels that sought to refuel the tanker were also inspected, with their documents seized for further investigation.
It was not immediately clear where the tanker came from. The nationalities of those arrested were not specified either.
“IRGC forces do their utmost to seriously and decisively confront organized smuggling off all the Persian Gulf coasts,” Hosseini added.
“Persian Gulf coasts and nearby areas will not be a safe place for profiteers and smugglers at all.”
Over the past years, Iran has seized many foreign oil tankers in its territorial waters on charges varying from fuel smuggling to polluting the waters.