SINGAPORE-- Seventeen men have been arrested for their suspected involvement in misappropriating fuel from Shell Bukom, the police said on Monday (Jan 8).

The suspects, aged between 30 and 63, were arrested in a joint operation on Sunday by officers from the criminal investigation department, police intelligence department and police coast guard.

A Shell Singapore spokesperson said the arrests include "a limited number" of Shell employees.

"Shell reported a suspected theft to the authorities after we became aware that we may have been the victim of a crime," the spokesperson said. The report was made in August last year, according to police.

During the operation, cash amounting to about S$3.05 million and a tanker weighing approximately 12,000 tonnes were seized for investigations.

The police also initiated the freezing of the suspects' bank accounts. Investigations against the suspects are ongoing. Shell added that it is "fully cooperating" with the police in the investigations.

"We anticipate a short delay in the supply operations at Bukom, but at this point we expect to continue to meet our contractual supply obligations to customers, the spokesperson added.