Published On: Wed, Apr 26th, 2017

Suspected Somali pirates on trial in India

Sixteen Somali pirates arrested during anti-piracy operations in 2011 today told a sessions court that they committed a crime but want to go home now and meet their families.

The court recorded the statements of the pirates who were arrested by the Indian Navy and the Indian Coast Guard in 2011.

“The court recorded their plea under the provisions of section 313 of Criminal Procedure Code,” said special public prosecutor Ranjeet Sangle.

Under the section 313, an accused is given an opportunity to personally explain any circumstances appearing in the evidence against him.

During recording of their statements, they said that they wanted to go home and meet their families. Some of them said that they have to be near their old parents as they need them now.

Two of the accused told the court that they took to the crime as the administration had collapsed in Somalia.

“I committed the mistake as there was no government in my country and I have realised it now. My wife is waiting for me there (in Somalia),” said Ali Afrah.

Echoing Afrah, another accused Mussa Rehman said that he took to the crime because of the collapse of government in his country.

“It (taking to crime) was because of the situation prevalent there (in Somalia) at that time. I wanted to meet my children now,” he added.

Yesterday, judge JC Jagdale recorded the statements of the first batch of 15 pirates comprising the nationals of Somalia, Ethiopia and Kenya.

A total of 120 sea brigands were apprehended between January and March 2011 and charged under relevant sections of Indian Penal Code, Arms Act and Unlawful Activities Prevention Act. One of them died during the trial.

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