DOJ: Life Sentence in Piracy Convictions

press release
Thursday, October 06, 2011

Two Somalis Sentenced to Life in Prison for Acts of Piracy Against the S/V Quest.

 

Muhidin Salad Omar, a/k/a  “Muhiyaden Salad,” a/k/a “Gurdan,” a/k/a “Gardan,” a/k/a “Gurden,” a/k/a “Muhdin,”  a/k/a “Dudan,” 30, and Mahdi Jama Mohamed, a/k/a “Mahdi,” age estimated to be 23 to 24, both of Somalia, were sentenced today in Norfolk federal court for acts of piracy against the S/V Quest, which resulted in the murder of United States citizens Scott Underwood Adam, Jean Savage Adam, Phyllis Patricia Macay and Robert Campbell Riggle.  Omar previously pled guilty on May 25, 2011 and Mohamed on pled guilty on May 26, 2011 to piracy under the law of nations.


Neil H. MacBride, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Janice K. Fedarcyk, Assistant Director-in-Charge of the FBI’s New York Field Office; Alex J. Turner, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Norfolk Field Office; and Mark Russ, Special Agent in Charge of the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) in Norfolk, made the announcement after Omar and Mohamed were sentenced by United States District Judge Mark S. Davis.


Somali piracy is a scourge on the world stage, and it continues to grow more widespread and more violent,” said U.S. Attorney MacBride. “Armed attacks on the high seas carry a very real threat of death to those taken hostage, a threat that was tragically made evident in this case. That threat remains for hundreds of hostages held hostage in Somalia, and a life sentence sends a strong message to anyone who chooses to engage in piracy against U.S. interests that they will face severe consequences.”


“Today’s sentencings should serve as yet another example, in the litany that already exists, of what happens to those who pirate our ships and participate in the killing of Americans. Muhidin Salad Omar and Mahdi Jama Mohamed will spend the rest of their lives behind bars, far away from the high seas they terrorized,” said Assistant Director-in-Charge Janice K. Fedarcyk.


According to court documents, Omar admitted that he was approached to participate in piracy operations because they needed a driver for the skiff and that he went to the American warship to try and save things, hoping that the American forces would pull back and allow them to reach Somali waters.  He told the court that the American commander informed the pirates that the U.S. government does not pay money, but if they sent over the hostages on the skiff, they could take the Quest.  He admitted that he knew the pirates had committed a crime against the United States because they held the hostages.  Omar admitted that he willingly engaged in piracy for financial gain and participated in the pirating of the Quest and in the taking of the four Americans on board as hostages.   However, he warranted in his plea agreement that he did not personally shoot any of the four Americans, nor did they instruct any other person to shoot the hostages.


Mohamed admitted he requested to join the pirates before the pirates left Somalia to look for a vessel to hijack.  He also admitted to holding a rifle while aboard the Quest when he was on guard duty with the hostages.   However, he also warranted in his plea agreement that he did not personally shoot any of the four Americans, nor did he instruct any other person to shoot the hostages.


The investigation of the case is being conducted by the FBI and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service. The prosecution in the Eastern District of Virginia is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Benjamin L. Hatch, Joseph DePadilla and Brian J. Samuels, from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, and Trial Attorney Paul Casey from the Department of Justice’s National Security Division.


A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia at http://www.justice.gov/usao/vae.  Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia at http://www.vaed.uscourts.gov or on https://pcl.uscourts.gov.
 

Maritime Reporter June 2015 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

People & Company News

New Binding Law of The Sea Agreement Advanced

WOC Sustainable Ocean Summit (Singapore, 9-11 November 2015) Will Enable Industry to Organize its Input to this Major New Ocean Treaty Development The U.N.

Oceans Can’t Take Any more: Researchers Fear Fundamental Change

Our oceans need an immediate and substantial reduction of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. If that doesn’t happen, we could see far-reaching and largely

Teekay LNG Partners Declares Distribution

Teekay GP LLC, the general partner of Teekay LNG Partners L.P. has declared a cash distribution of $0.70 per unit for the quarter ended June 30, 2015. The cash distribution is payable on August 14,

Legal

New Binding Law of The Sea Agreement Advanced

WOC Sustainable Ocean Summit (Singapore, 9-11 November 2015) Will Enable Industry to Organize its Input to this Major New Ocean Treaty Development The U.N.

Oceans Can’t Take Any more: Researchers Fear Fundamental Change

Our oceans need an immediate and substantial reduction of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. If that doesn’t happen, we could see far-reaching and largely

Teekay LNG Partners Declares Distribution

Teekay GP LLC, the general partner of Teekay LNG Partners L.P. has declared a cash distribution of $0.70 per unit for the quarter ended June 30, 2015. The cash distribution is payable on August 14,

Maritime Security

New Binding Law of The Sea Agreement Advanced

WOC Sustainable Ocean Summit (Singapore, 9-11 November 2015) Will Enable Industry to Organize its Input to this Major New Ocean Treaty Development The U.N.

Saab Bags $1 bln Order for Swedish Submarines

The Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (FMV) has awarded contracts worth Skr8.6bn ($1.03bn) to Saab AB for the construction of two new Type A26 submarines

Latest LCS Completes US Navy Trials

Littoral Combat Ship 6 (LCS 6), the future USS Jackson, has completed U.S. Navy acceptance trials, shipbuilder Austal Limited announced.   The trials, the final milestone before delivery,

Maritime Safety

New Binding Law of The Sea Agreement Advanced

WOC Sustainable Ocean Summit (Singapore, 9-11 November 2015) Will Enable Industry to Organize its Input to this Major New Ocean Treaty Development The U.N.

Ocean Safety, Richard Irvin Marine Safety Merger

Ocean Safety has today announced the merger with Richard Irvin Energy Solutions Marine Safety Division and their Aberdeen branch.   This merger follows the

EU NAVFOR Consults Somali Fisherman

Sailors from Operation Atalanta Warship ITS Libeccio speak to local fishermen about European Union’s efforts to deter Somali piracy   Sailors from Operation Atalanta

 
 
Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Maritime Standards Navigation Port Authority Ship Electronics Ship Repair Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Sonar
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1777 sec (6 req/sec)