Toowoomba tackles pirates
TOOWOOMBA'S namesake warship has thwarted a piracy attack off the coast of Yemen in the Gulf of Aden.
HMAS Toowoomba responded to an emergency radio call from the merchant vessel BBC Portugal, which reported a boat carrying a group of armed individuals closing at high speed.
Watch video of the attack: Toowoomba thwarts piracy attack
Under the command of Commander Ivan Ingham, Toowoomba immediately responded alongside a coalition surveillance aircraft and a naval helicopter from another coalition warship.
The helicopter crew confirmed sighting weapons and reported that crew on the suspect vessel were seen throwing items overboard.
“Toowoomba launched her boarding team to investigate, search, disarm and seize,” Commander Ingham said.
A search of the vessel revealed a cache of weapons including a rocket propelled grenade launcher, six AK47 assault rifles, a G3 assault r0ifle and a large quantity of ammunition.
The occupants, from nearby Somalia, denied their intention to conduct piracy activities.
The incident occurred late on Sunday night Australian time.