13 March 2017

Seychelles Repatriates Five Somali Nationals Acquitted for Piracy Offences

Five Somali nationals were repatriated Monday after being acquitted for their conviction on piracy offences, a statement from the Ministry of Home Affairs said.

In co-ordination with the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the Ministry of Home Affairs repatriated the five Somalis early Monday morning on board a chartered aircraft of the Island Development Company (IDC).

The transfer of the Somali nationals from Seychelles back to Somalia was done under the supervision of a UNODC official.

The Somalis had successfully appealed their case in December 2016 and were declared free of the charge of piracy offences by the Seychelles Court of Appeal. The court had ruled that there was not enough evidence to maintain the conviction of the five Somalis.

The Somali nationals were convicted in June 2016 to 12 years in prison by the Seychelles Supreme Court after they were found guilty of piracy offences.

They were accused of attacking a dhow (a sailing vessel with one mast of more) and holding the Indian crew as hostages and using the dhow as a pirate ship to attack a cargo vessel. The offences were said to have been committed in the Gulf of Aden between January 1 and January 18, 2014.

Seychelles, an archipelago in the western Indian Ocean, and Somalia have in place agreements to repatriate Somali nationals. These apply to Somalis who have either completed their sentences in Seychelles, or are either transferred to complete sentencing in Somalia at a UNODC recognised prison facility, or those who may have been acquitted of their charges following appeals, as was the case for this repatriation.

Currently there are 15 Somali nationals who remain incarcerated at the Seychelles' main detention facility - Montagne Possee Prison - on sentences for acts of piracy.

Seychelles

President of Seychelles Travels to Cuba to Witness Opening of New Embassy

The Seychelles' President Danny Faure is travelling Monday to Cuba on a state visit at the invitation of Cuban President… Read more »

Copyright © 2017 Seychelles News Agency. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 700 reports a day from more than 140 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.