Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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The phrase 'crumpled heap' comes to mind.

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Good Ol' Piracy

"Black Gold"- The new piracy
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For those of you who have read the book "Looking for a Ship" by John Mcphee, then you know piracy on the oceans is far from gone. Piracy today can consist of a speed boat full of guys who board a cargo barge and get away with a truck-sized box. Paycheck for a year, or something like that. There's money to be had there... The ocean is absoloutely full of cargo ships at any given time, huge, slow, lumbering, mostly automated, sparsely manned cargo ships. Here's how I see it- you get people back in the states to invest in this project, 1 million dollars or so. Start up a dummy company called South China Trading or some crap like that. Then, you lease an oil tanker out from a shipping company. Paint it completely different and buld false structures on it to make it look different. Then, you go to our good friends in the Russian Navy and purchase one old corvette, plus crew (those are usually small- maybe under 100 men). Tell the crew they all get a piece of the money if this is pulled off right. Now the South China Sea is full of oil fields, its the biggest oil producer outside of the middle east. All oil that has to go west goes in oil tankers, down south of thailand and vietnam. There are only 2 small places to get to the indian ocean from there, unless you'd like to go all the way around Australia. Most ships pass through the Straight of Jakarta on thier way to the Indian Ocean. Have your your cargo ship leave Perth, Australia, on it's way to Hong Kong via Jakarta. Being good people, the Australian dockmasters will write down in the files/archives that that ship left empty for Hong Kong via Jakarta. Then, while the cargo ship is in transit, hijack another oil tanker with your corvette. Have the hijacked ship pump it's oil into your cargo ship, then get on way to Hong Kong, where people will jump at the chance to buy your cargo at low prices. Sink the hijacked ship (or sell). Rinse and repeat. Several million dollars later (still being very careful), but not enough time for people to get real suspicious, you stop the operation. Give the corvette crew all the money the earned and each a free plane ticket to wherever the hell they want to go (spread 'em out). Scuttle the corvette somewhere deep. Then change the tanker back to the way it was before and return to holding company. Shut company down, repaying investors, and then take earned money. Enjoy rest of life under different name.
Yoji, May 17 2001

Homestar Runner http://www.homestarrunner.com/
For more information about Strongbadia, plus one of the best Flash-based cartoons on the web! [Pharaoh Mobius, Oct 04 2004]


       How does one hijack an oil tanker using a Corvette?
snarfyguy, May 17 2001

       I think you should use a Bentley - they're much roomier, faster and quieter. Sure they're kind of expensive but it's an investment.
thumbwax, May 17 2001

       I'd rather have 1% of 100 corvettes than 100% of one corvette.
reensure, May 17 2001

       the only actual reason i can think of for using something as large as the corvette would be to save money on buying a grappling hook gun   

       you dont need a whole navy battleship just: 5-10 guys 5-10 shotguns/handguns small(inflateable) speedboat grapplinghook thrower+ropeladder
chud, Jan 27 2002

       wouldn't it be better to buy an old diesel sub from russia. you could sneak up on them easier, as long as the navies of the world dont get suspicious. no matter hwat though put up some fake flag, like for honduras or zimbabwe or something- under international law a nation's ship cannot search another nations ship unless no flag is present
junkmail, Dec 23 2002

       //no matter hwat though put up some fake flag//
Like, for instance, the national flag of Strongbadia? [Link]
Pharaoh Mobius, Dec 23 2002

       This is so krak.   

       Even if you kill the crew of the hijacked ship, they'll surely have sent an SOS while you're boarding them (short of ninja-style antics).   

       The "speedboat, grab a crate and run" type of piracy works because you're far away by the time help actually arrives, and you can take your speedboat just about anywhere without attracting attention and quietly fence the loot.   

       An oil tanker, on the other hand, isn't going to get far, nor will it be easy to hide, and even if you do get away it will be impossible to sell the goods since everyone will be looking for a rogue oil tanker. (Rogue *oil tanker*? This is ridiculous.)   

       There's a reason people don't generally steal bulk goods like oil (or lumber or scrap steel or topsoil), or if they do it's by fraud not robbery. It's just so much easier to heist and fence small high-value goods.
egnor, Dec 23 2002

       Idea aside, I love John McPhee's writing and haven't read the book you mention. I will remedy that. Thanks.
bristolz, Dec 23 2002

       [Pharoah M] to pirates: "Come back chocolates! I didn't mean what I said."
it sobad, Jan 02 2004

       To Egnor I understand that in South Africa they steal copper cabling that has been buried underground by buying a big truck or tractor and hooking up one end of the cable and driving away slowly.   

       I believe it can be quite a lucrative industry.   

       10 miles of Copper Cable? Don't mind if I do.
PainOCommonSense, Feb 12 2004


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