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Intertanko welcomes Kenyan jail sentences for pirates

Intertanko welcomes Kenyan jail sentences for pirates

London: Independent tanker owners' association Intertanko has welcomed this week's judgment in a Kenyan prosecution following the arrest of pirates by an EU NAVFOR warship. Seven Somali men accused of acts of piracy have been convicted in the Mombasa Law Courts and sentenced to five years' imprisonment. This is Kenya's second pirate conviction this year - in March, eight pirates were sentenced to 20 years' imprisonment. In all, Kenya has taken on 14 pirate cases involving 224 suspected pirates. This country is one of the first to introduce specific laws domesticating the provisions of UNCLOS thereby updating its national laws on piracy.

"Intertanko commends Kenya for its willingness to assume the responsibility, despite limited resources, to prosecute and incarcerate sentenced pirates," says md Dr Peter Swift. "Intertanko once again challenges signatory nations to UNCLOS, nations with naval units deployed in the high-risk area and/or whose merchant ships receive protection during transit of the high-risk area, to assume their responsibilities to act with force and determination to apprehend suspected pirates and bring them to justice under their national judicial systems".

The attack in March 2009 on the FGS Spessart, a Rhoen-class tanker of the German Navy, by these seven men aboard a single pirate skiff was beaten off by the vessel's security team. The skiff was tracked by three multinational taskforces and stopped by the German frigate FGS Rheinland-Pfalz. [10/09/10]