Horn of Africa This Week

US court sentences Somalis charged with piracy to life

A United States court charged and sentenced three Somali nationals for piracy and kidnapping. The three received a life sentence, a lesser sentence to the death penalty sought by prosecutors. They were implicated in the standoff that caused the death of four Americans in the Somali coast in 2011.

Billy Kenber of the Washington Post writes,

The case is part of a wider international crackdown on piracy that has led to the prosecution of Somali pirates in 20 countries. Michael Scharf, a legal expert on Somali piracy and associate dean for global legal studies at Case Western Reserve University, said prosecutors hoped the possibility of a death sentence would serve as a powerful deterrent. “Most pirates convicted around the world have received relatively light sentences,” he said.



About the author

Mohammed A

Mohammed Ademo is a freelance journalist based in Washington, DC. He's the founder and editor of, an independent news website about Ethiopia.

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