Pirates in Troubled Water
Vietnamese authorities on Saturday handed over 11 pirates they arrested last November to their Indonesian counterparts.
The pirates were extradited to Indonesia the same day through Tan Son Nhat International Airport in Ho Chi Minh City.
Colonel Cao Xuan Trang, deputy chief commander of Ba Ria Vung Tau Border Guards, said although the pirates had violated Vietnamese laws and were arrested in Vietnam, they were handed over to Indonesian police because the crime was committed in Indonesian waters.
On November 22 last year, Vietnamese Marine Police arrested the pirates when they were onboard the ship Zafirah off Ba Ria Vung Tau Province.
Earlier, they had boarded the ship forced 9 sailors, four Indonesians and five Myanmarese, on to a lifeboat. They repainted the vessel’s name as Sea Horse to avoid detection.
All nine sailors were rescued by fishermen of Ba Ria Vung Tau’s Long Dien District about 100 nautical miles off Vung Tau Town.
The vessel and nine fishermen were later handed over to Indonesian authorities.
A Malaysia-registered tanker, Zafirah was attacked early on November 18 by the pirates as it carried 320,173 liters of marine gas oil from Johor to Sarawak. The ship was two days into its journey.
In a meeting with Indonesian police and consulate representatives on April 12, Col. Trang informed them that Vietnamese investigators have found that three other people, two Indonesians and a Singaporean, were also involved in the piracy.