Piracy case against 5 Somalis goes to jury in Virginia

The men are accused of participating in an attack on a U.S. Navy ship off the African coast

Topics: Somalia,

The piracy case against five Somali men accused in an attack on a U.S. Navy ship off the African coast is headed to jurors in Virginia.

A U.S. District Court jury on Monday heard 4 1/2 hours of closing arguments. Judge Mark S. Davis told jurors to return Tuesday morning to begin their deliberations.

Attorneys for the five argued that the defendants were shark fishermen who were captured by pirates and violently forced into launching the April 1 attack on the USS Nicholas.

Prosecutors scoffed at the defense arguments and described the assault on the Navy frigate as a vicious and armed attack on American sailors.

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