Finnish police probe ship with missile cargo

Reuters News
Posted: Dec 21, 2011 11:14 AM

HELSINKI (Reuters) - Finnish police are investigating a ship for carrying missiles and explosive materials without permission while stopping in Finland en route from Germany to China.

Authorities searched cargo ship Thor Liberty in Kotka, southern Finland, and found 69 Patriot missiles with explosives and 150 tonnes of explosive material called nitroguanidine, the National Bureau of Investigation said.

The ship was sailing under an Isle of Man flag and had stopped to load cables on board. Finnish media earlier said the ship was also scheduled to stop in South Korea, but police did not confirm that.

A Finnish safety official said the boat had initially been stopped because the nitroguanidine did not appear to be stowed properly.

The ship's owner, Thorco Shipping, was not immediately available for comment.

(Reporting by Terhi Kinnunen; Editing by Alison Williams)