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Tag: Pirate

FBI’s Long Arm Nabs Pirate Negotiator in Somalia


By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The long arm of the FBI reached into Somalia and plucked out a man suspected of being the chief negotiator for a group of pirates who hijacked an American yacht in February and ultimately killed all four people aboard, authorities announced Wednesday.

Mohammad Saaili Shibin, who worked ashore as the pirates held the people hostage, was arrested  in a joint effort with the FBI and Somali government.  He was indicted in Norfolk, Va.

“The arrest of Mohammad Shibin is a significant breakthrough in the United States’ battle against Somali pirates,” said U.S. Attorney Neil H. MacBride said Wednesday. “Today marks the first time that the U.S. government has captured and charged an alleged pirate in a leadership role—a hostage negotiator who operated in Somalia.”

“As 14 heavily armed men holed-up aboard the Quest, Mohammad Shibin allegedly worked behind the scenes determining exactly how much cash could be extorted for the Americans’ safe release,” said New York’s FBI Assistant Director in Charge Janice K. Fedarcyk.

Fourteen others who hijacked the SV/Quest yacht have been indicted in the matter and are awaiting trial, which is set for Nov. 29.

The indictment alleges that during the negotiations, Shibin was on land conducting research on the Internet to learn about the hostages on the yacht and figure out the appropriate ransom demand, authorities said.

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Somali Pirate Pleads Guilty in Manhattan

pirates-of-the-caribbeanBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

After decades of seeing pirates portrayed in Hollywood as sword waving, one eye-patched, mythical figures, America has gotten a real life glimpse of the 21st Century Pirate. And he’s not nearly as suave.

Abduwali Abdukhadir Muse, a Somali pirate, pleaded guilty Tuesday in a Manhattan federal court to leading the attack on the U.S. vessel Maersk Alabama about 350 miles off the coast of Somali in April 2009. He also pleaded guilty to the hijacking of two other vessels in March and April of last year.

In the case of the  Maersk Alabama, authorities alleged that he and a group of pirates boarded the ship and then took Capt. Richard Phillips hostage on a life boat.

CNN reported that he apologized through an interpreter during court proceedings.

“What we did was wrong. I am very sorry for all of this,” Muse said, according to CNN. “All of this happened because of the government in Somalia.”

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara issued a statement after the guilty plea, saying:

“Today, Abduwali Abdukhadir Musé admitted his leadership role in the armed hijacking of an American-flagged vessel and two international ships in the Indian Ocean. The five-day Maersk hijacking and the events leading up to it make clear that modern-day piracy is a crime against the international community and a form of terrorism on the high seas.”

Read Justice Department Press Release