It was announced earlier this month that nine suspect pirates have been transported to the Seychelles to face prosecution. The EU Naval Force (NAVFOR) made the announcement in a press release issued on Monday.
The suspect pirates were detained earlier in February when the HNLMS De Ruyter was taking part in a counter piracy patrol off the coast of Somalia when it spotted two skiffs.
A helicopter from HNLMS De Ruyter and EU Naval Force flagship ESPS Mendez Nunez took part in the operation. The Spanish EU NAVFOR Maritime Patrol Reconnaissance Aircraft (MPRA), was also involved in the operation and working together they were able to stop the skiffs as they sailed along the Somalia coast.
After the suspect pirates were detained, they were held while further investigations were carried out and the two skiffs were detained.
On Monday it was announced that the republic of the Seychelles had agreed to take the suspect pirates for prosecution.
This is the second time this year that suspect pirates have been detained and transferred for prosecution. In January it was announced that 13 suspect pirates had been transferred to Mauritius for prosecution.
Commenting in a press release, Operation Commander of the European Union Naval Force Rear Admiral Bob Tarrant, said:
“I welcome the decision of the Republic of the Seychelles to once again prosecute those suspected of attacking ships at sea. The Seychelles are a steadfast partner of the EU, determined and committed in the fight against piracy. Once more we have sent a clear message to pirates that the EU Naval Force will always seek, whenever possible, a legal finish”.