61 sea pirates brought to Mumbai, placed under arrest

Sixty one pirates, including 60 Somalian and an Ethiopian, caught by the Indian Navy in the Arabian Sea, were on Wednesday brought here and placed under arrest, police said.

Last Updated: Mar 16, 2011, 22:50 PM IST

Mumbai: Sixty one pirates, including 60
Somalian and an Ethiopian, caught by the Indian Navy in the
Arabian Sea, were on Wednesday brought here and placed under arrest,
police said.
"The 61 pirates were brought to Mumbai today in INS
Tabar. All have been booked under relevant sections of the
IPC, Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, Indian Passport
Act, the Foreigners Act and the Arms Act," Deputy Police
Commissioner (Port Zone) Quiser Khalid said.

They will be produced before a local court tomorrow.

After a gun-battle in the high seas, the navy had
apprehended a pirate mother ship called Vega 5 and caught the
sea brigands about 600 nautical miles on Saturday.

The operation had started on Friday when a naval
Dornier aircraft located Vega 5 while responding to a call
from a merchant ship MV Vancouver Bridge in the area and
foiled the piracy attempt.
Thirteen victims, rescued in the operation, were also
brought to Mumbai of whom 12 were Mozambique nationals while
one was from Indonesia, Khalid said.

"We believe that 24 crew members were there on the
ship that was hijacked. Among them, two were from Spain, three
from Indonesia and the rest from Mozambique. However, during
the operation, there were only 13 victims located. We suspect
that remaining might have been kidnapped in Somalia," he said.

Vega 5, a Mozambique-flagged fishing vessel was
hijacked on December 10 last year and being used as mother
vessel for piracy operations. The brigands had carried out
several attacks in last four months, officials said.

The Vega 5 capsized after it caught fire during the
anti-piracy operation by Navy officials, Khalid said, adding
that a huge cache of weapons including 21 rifles and two
rocket-propelled grenades were recovered.

PTI