Today In Piracy

Was Captured Pirate in Charge?

Captured pirate Abdiwali Abdiqadir Muse may have been all smiles when he arrived in New York, but prosecutors allege that he is not the innocent teenager his family and defenders claim. In their case against him—the first piracy trial in the United States in over 100 years—prosecutors have portrayed Muse as a tough criminal who was the first to board the hijacked ship, fired a shot at the captain, helped steal $30,000 in cash from a safe, and bragged about hijacking ships in the past. Members of the Maersk Alabama crew revealed new details about the attack, narrating how they captured Muse by tricking him into leaving his gun with other pirates while he searched the ship. According to crewmember ATM “Zahid” Reza, Muse counted himself lucky to raid a U.S. ship and carried himself as the leader of the pirate gang. “He was surprised he was on a U.S. ship,” said Reza. “He kept asking, ‘You all come from America?’ Then he claps and cheers and smiles. He caught himself a big fish. He can’t believe it.”