Skip to main content
Updated:
Original:

Somali pirate gets 12 life sentences in hijackings

A federal court judge in Norfolk, Va., ordered a Somali pirate on Monday to serve a dozen life sentences in prison for his role in the hijacking of a German merchant vessel and a U.S. cruising sailboat, saying the hostage negotiator was lucky he wasn't facing the death penalty.

Mohammad Saaili Shibin is considered by U.S. authorities to be the highest-ranking pirate they have ever captured. Shibin had direct ties to those who finance pirate operations from ashore in largely lawless Somalia.

Four Americans aboard the Quest were shot to death by pirates off the coast of Africa in 2011, and the crew on the other vessel was tortured to get a higher ransom in 2010.

"I think this case explodes the myth, if still it exists out there, that pirates are some kind of romantic swashbuckling characters from Hollywood summer movies. This case showed that pirates are brutal, greedy, reckless, desperate criminals who will kidnap, torture and ultimately kill hostages in pursuit of their financial greed," U.S. Attorney Neil MacBride told the Associated Press after the sentencing.

Click here for the full report.

Meanwhile, a report by Reuters said that in 2011 Somali pirates reportedly cost the world economy $7 billion and earned $160 million in ransoms.

In related news, Armed Piracy Defense, a private firm based in southern Florida, is offering security services for ships.

“APD is an anti-piracy security company that provides armed security teams for vessels transiting piracy-prone waters, providing armed and unarmed protection forces and guards to ships transiting through the Horn of Africa, the Gulf of Aden, Somalia and the Red Sea,” the company said on its website. “All our security personnel are individually selected from the elite ranks of the Navy SEALs.”

For $3,500 to $3,800 a day, ships can hire three guards to keep their crew and cargo safe.

Related

Sudbury Names Martin Flory Group Agency of Record

The Peabody, Mass., boat-care products company has hired the public-relations firm to enhance market positioning of the company and its subsidiaries.

Technohull Opens New Shipyard

The Greek high-performance RIB manufacturer moves operations to a purpose-built,129,000-square-foot facility.

Yamaha Rightwaters Supports N.Y. Oyster Restoration

The Billion Oyster Project in New York Harbor aims to bring back bivalves to the mouth of the Hudson River and one of the country’s busiest harbors.

Zeelander Names New CEO

Marine industry veteran Grant Hooper is appointed CEO of Zeelander Yachts.

AIM Marine Group Hosts Meet the Editors Event

More than a dozen editors from Active Interest Media’s Marine Group participated in the day-long, information-sharing event.