Somali pirate to spend life in prison for death of 4 Americans

WASHINGTON, Nov. 12 (Xinhua) — A Somali pirate will spend the rest of his life in a federal prison for his role in the 2011 hijacking of a sailboat off the coast of Africa that left four Americans dead, local report said Tuesday.

The pirate, Ahmed Muse Salad, was sentenced to 19 consecutive life sentences, plus 30 years in a U.S. District Court in Norfolk, Virginia, the Virginian-Pilot reported.

Two other Somali men convicted in the hijacking — Abukar Osman Beyle, 20, and Shani Nurani Shiekh Abrar, 29 — are set to be sentenced later this week. Both are expected to receive similarly lengthy sentences. They were convicted on July 8.

The charges against the Somalians stemmed from the Feb. 22, 2011 shootings on the yacht Quest after negotiations broke down between the pirates and the Navy. The victims were Scott and Jean Adam, a California couple who owned the boat, and Phyllis Patricia Macay and Robert Riggle, both of Seattle.

Prosecutors said one pirate fired a rocket-propelled grenade at the American guided missile destroyer Sterett. Shortly thereafter, Salad, Beyle and Abrar opened fire on the hostages.

Eleven of the Somali men who were captured on the hijacked yacht previously pleaded guilty to their involvement. All received life sentences.


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