The prey from two highjackings might be spended – a former Somali pirate (symbol photo) claimed asylum in the Austrian citiy of Salzburg.Foto: Bild: Chief Information Systems Technician Kenneth Anderson / wikimedia.com (CC-PD-Mark)
4. März 2019 / 22:14
A Somali migrant who filed for asylum in Austria has been arrested after the local authorities said DNA evidence proved he was a pirate believed to be involved in the hijacking of two German ships.
The 24-year-old man, whose name has not been identified, was arrested in the Austrian city of Salzburg where he filed for asylum.
When authorities checked his identity, they found out through his DNA that the man was actually a feared pirate and had a pan-European arrest warrant issued against him.
The Somali migrant has since been extradited to Germany where he is suspected of being part of an armed pirate gang involved in the hijacking of two German ships off the Horn of Africa in 2010 and 2011 when he was 16 years old.
On 27th December 2010, the freighter Ems River was hijacked and the eight-man crew was released on 1st March 2011 after a ransom of 3 million USD (2.25 million GBP) was paid.
The second alleged attack took place on 8th April 2011 when the crew took over the freighter Susan K , holding the 10-man crew hostage until 16th June of the same year.
According to reports, the crew was eventually released after the freight company paid 3.5 million USD (2.63 million GBP) in ransom money.
Nobody was injured or killed during the two hijackings.
It is not the first time that Somali pirates managed to make their way into Europe.
Five Somali pirates caught off the Horn of Africa and sentenced in a German court for hijacking a freighter were even given their own houses and full social benefits as they could not be deported by the German authorities.
The five pirates were part of a group of 10 Somalis who hijacked German freighter Taipan in 2010, and were arrested by Dutch marines who happened to be in the area and stormed the ship.
They were brought to Germany to face trial and after serving their sentences, ranging from two to seven years in prison, only five of the 10 pirates voluntarily left Germany to head back to Somalia.
The other five refused to leave the country and currently live in Hamburg on social benefits paid for by taxpayers.
None of the five pirates has a Somali passport and the country s embassy refused to cooperate and issue temporary travel documents, according to reports.