A VLCC was cleared to load crude off Nigeria’s coast just a day before it was seized amid claims that it was involved in an oil theft plot, according to the ship’s owners.

The 300,000-dwt Heroic Idun (built 2020) has been detained since August at the request of Nigeria, which claims that the ship’s crew had attempted to load oil without proper authorisation.

Owner Idun Maritime on Friday released an account of the days before the seizure to rebut the claims to try to release the multinational crew which has been held for more than three months in Equatorial Guinea and Nigeria.