Men seized by special forces on Isle of Wight tanker to face no charges after CPS drops case

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Seven men seized by UK special forces after a suspected hijacking of an oil tanker will face no further criminal action.

The SBS raid made headlines in October after they boarded the vessel near the Isle of Wight and detained the group in minutes, following a 10-hour stand-off.

Two of the men, Sunday Sylvester, 22, and Matthew John Okorie, 25, had previously been charged with an offence relating to endangering ships and were due to appear in court this month.

However, police confirmed they and five others would now face no further action.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) decided there was not enough evidence to charge them or continue the case.

Senior Crown Prosecutor Sophie Stevens said they had to keep cases under constant review, and after "additional maritime expert evidence came to light, we concluded there was no longer a realistic prospect of conviction and discontinued the case".

The Home Office has criticised the decision.

It said the British people would "struggle to understand how this can be the case" and added that it was working with the CPS.

The seven men are all from Nigeria and have been detained since the incident on the 228m (748ft) Nave Andromeda on 25 October.

Navios Tanker Management, the ship's operator, said the stowaways had "illegally boarded" the tanker in Lagos, Nigeria's sprawling port.

Hampshire Police said the men would remain detained subject to immigration procedures.