A former Russian-flagged ship was engaged in ‘dark’ ship-to-ship transfer operations in the months before one of its oil cargoes ended inside a Maersk Product Tanker, according to Israel-based data analyst firm Windward.

The Russia-linked, 46,200-dwt Nobel (built 1997), owned by a company in the Seychelles, was the key link in a trading chain that led to a ship from the Maersk Tankers’ pool being barred from unloading Turkish vacuum gas oil at a European port earlier this month.