DOJ: Alleged Somali Hostage Negotiator Indicted for Piracy

Monday, August 22, 2011

22 Men Held Hostage for Seven Months as Alleged Negotiator Secured Ransom Paid for Release


The man accused of being the negotiator for the ransom of four U.S. citizens held hostage on the high seas has been indicted for his alleged role in successfully extracting a ransom for a separate vessel and 22 hostages held by Somali pirates.

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; and Alex J. Turner, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Norfolk Field Office, made the announcement.

“Mr. Shibin is alleged to be among the select few who are entrusted with one of the most important tasks in Somali piracy – ensuring a ship’s owners pay the maximum amount of ransom possible for the release of a hijacked vessel,” said U.S. Attorney MacBride. “The ransom paid for the Marida Marguerite capped a year where authorities estimate pirates received more than $100 million in ransom payments. The role he’s accused of fulfilling for pirates on the Marida Marguerite is the same role he allegedly intended to fill for the Quest. This case is aimed at the heart of the piracy business, striking at the small group of men who make receiving millions from piracy a reality.”
“During the seven month ordeal, Mr. Shibin allegedly successfully negotiated a large ransom for the release of twenty-two crew abroad the Marida Marguerite,” said FBI ADIC Fedarcyk. “The negotiator has the most important job in the piracy business, extorting the most money possible for the ship and crew.  As pirates operate during this period of instability in Somalia, the FBI will continue to apprehend all those involved, from Puntland villages to the Arabian Sea.”

Mohammad Saaili Shibin, a/k/a “Khalif Ahmed Shibin,” a/k/a “Shibin,” 50, of Somalia, was indicted on March 8, 2011, by a federal grand jury in Newport News, Va., in association with the alleged pirating of an American yacht, the S/V Quest, and taking hostage four U.S. citizens, who were ultimately killed before their release could be secured.

Today, Shibin was charged in a 15-count superseding indictment accusing him of serving as the ransom negotiator for conspirators who pirated the M/V Marida Marguerite, a German-owned vessel with a crew of 22 men who were held hostage off the coast of Somalia from May to December 2010. According to the indictment, Shibin spoke with the owners of the Marida Marguerite and successfully extracted a ransom payment for the vessel and its crew. The indictment states that Shibin received approximately $30,000 to $50,000 in U.S. currency as his share of the ransom payment.

Shibin was also charged with additional counts related to the attack on the Quest. A full list of the charges included in the superseding indictment and their penalties are provided below:

    * Two counts of piracy under the law of nations, which each carry a mandatory penalty of life in prison.
    * Two counts of conspiracy to commit hostage taking, which each carry a penalty of up to life in prison.
    * Two counts of hostage taking, which each carry a penalty of up to life in prison.
    * Two counts of conspiracy to commit violence against maritime navigation, which each carry a penalty of up to 20 years in prison.
    * Two counts of violence against maritime navigation, which each carry a mandatory penalty of up to 20 years in prison.
    * Conspiracy to commit kidnapping, which carries a maximum penalty of life in prison.
    * Kidnapping, which carries a maximum penalty of life in prison.
    * Three counts of use, carry, and discharge of a firearm during a crime of violence, the first count of which carries a mandatory minimum 10 years and a maximum of life in prison, and the latter two counts of which carry mandatory consecutive life sentences.

This investigation was conducted by the FBI’s New York Field Office and Norfolk Field Office, with assistance from the Naval Criminal Investigative Service. In addition, U.S. Attorney MacBride expressed his appreciation for the close coordination and cooperation of German judicial and police authorities in building the latest charges involving the Marida Marguerite.

The prosecution is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Benjamin L. Hatch, Joseph E. DePadilla, and Brian J. Samuels from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia and Trial Attorney Paul Casey of the Counterterrorism Section in the Justice Department’s National Security Division.

The public is reminded that an indictment only contains charges and is not evidence of guilt.  A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. 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 September 2013 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

News

Fortum Buys Stake in Wave Power Startup

Finland's top utility, state-controlled Fortum, on Monday said it has acquired a 14 percent stake in Finnish wave energy developer Wello. Wello has developed

Gazprom Neft Starts Oil Production, Shipments from Iraqi Badra Field

Russia's Gazprom Neft said on Monday it started commercial production and shipments of oil produced at its Iraqi Badra oil field. Gazprom Neft, the oil arm of state gas company Gazprom ,

Statoil Says Normal Operations at In Amenas Gas Plant Resuming

Normal operations are resuming at the In Amenas gas plant in Algeria 18 months after a raid by Islamist militants killed forty employees, one of the plant's operators, Statoil, said on Monday.

Coast Guard

USCG Medevacs Mariner in Port Alexander, Alaska

The Coast Guard medevaced an 87-year-old female reportedly suffering from complications associated with a lower back injury aboard the fishing vessel Annie B in Port Alexander, Sunday evening.

USCG Responds to Plane Crash 51 mi SE Of Chincoteague Island, VA

The Coast Guard is responding to a plane crash Saturday approximately 51 miles southeast of Chincoteague Island.   Watchstanders at the Coast Guard 5th District

USCG Repatriates 86 Migrants

Coast Guard crews aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Charles David Jr. and the Coast Guard Cutter Valiant repatriated 86 migrants illegally migrating from Cuba and Haiti.

Maritime Safety

USCG Medevacs Mariner in Port Alexander, Alaska

The Coast Guard medevaced an 87-year-old female reportedly suffering from complications associated with a lower back injury aboard the fishing vessel Annie B in Port Alexander, Sunday evening.

VIKING Saatsea Puts Crew Training in its Place

VIKING Saatsea will be at SMM 2014 to showcase the revolution it has brought about in crew training – moving everything on board to cut costs, speed up certification,

USCG Responds to Plane Crash 51 mi SE Of Chincoteague Island, VA

The Coast Guard is responding to a plane crash Saturday approximately 51 miles southeast of Chincoteague Island.   Watchstanders at the Coast Guard 5th District

People in the News

More German Shipowners Look to Gibdock for Repairs

Gibdock remarks it has continued to see its stock rise amongst the German shipowner community over the past year. Indeed the Gibraltar ship repair yard’s recent

Wärtsilä Reshuffles Two Top Managers

The following appointments have been made in the management inform Wärtsilä Corporation: Mr Rakesh Sarin (59), B.Sc. (Eng.), has been appointed President of Power Plants,

Clarksons PLC Perform Strongly in 1H 2014

Leading shipping services group, Clarksons PLC reports strong strong financial performance in the first half of 2014. Financial Results Clarksons increased revenues by 25% to £111.

Government Update

FTA Approves WSF Ferry Terminal Plans

In the latest Washington State Ferries Weekly Update, Capt. George A. Capacci, Interim Assistant Secretary WSDOT/Ferries Division briefs as follows: "FTA approves

DoD Award Dredging, Ship Maintenance, Charter Contracts

US Department of Defense informs of placement of contracts for Chesapeake Bay dredging, dry-docking of USS Pearl Harbor, and charter of surface escort vessels. Details as follows: 1.

Indian Investigators Drop Case Against Billionaire Birla

India's Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has closed a coal scam case against billionaire Kumar Mangalam Birla and a former top bureaucrat that emerged in

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Maritime Standards Navigation Offshore Oil Pod Propulsion Port Authority Ship Electronics Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | 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: 0.1821 sec (5 req/sec)