Enough evidence to indict El Hiblu 1 hijackers

The migrants reportedly threatened the ship’s crew and forced it to change course for Malta

A court of Magistrates has ruled that there are sufficient grounds to indict three young men who hijacked a tanker which had rescued them at sea.

The three youths, two from Guinea and one from the Ivory Coast who are aged 15, 16 and 19 are charged with having unlawfully seized control of the ship El Hiblu1, which under Maltese law is punishable by a prison sentence of between seven and 30 years in prison. 

Members of the group of around 100 migrants who were rescued at sea, reportedly threatened the crew and forced it to change course for Malta once they realised they were going to be returned to Libya where they face persecution. 

This afternoon, Magistrate Aaron Bugeja, presiding over the compilation of evidence, ruled that there was enough evidence for the men to be placed under a bill of indictment.

The prosecution in this case is being led by Inspector Omar Zammit and lawyer Nadia Attard from the Office of the Attorney General. Lawyers Malcolm Mifsud, Neil Falzon and Gianluca Cappitta are defence counsel.

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