Marine Log 26 April 2017
APRIL 26, 2017 — A pirate involved in what will probably rank as the dumbest act of piracy ever has been sentenced to life plus 10 years in prison for engaging in piracy and committing other offenses pertaining to an attack on the USS Ashland (LSD 48) in April 2010.
The sentence was imposed on Mohamed Farah, 31, of Somalia, by U.S. District Judge Raymond A. Jackson in the U.S District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia.
A federal jury convicted Farah on Feb. 27, 2013. According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, Farah and five co-conspirators attacked the USS Ashland on April 10, 2010. Four of Farah’s co-conspirators were previously sentenced for their roles in the attack: Jama Idle Ibrahim (15 years in prison), Mohamed Ali Said (33 years), Mohamed Abdi Jama (life plus 30 years) and Abdicasiis Cabaase (life plus 30 years).
These defendants had also previously gone to sea in February 2010 with the purpose of capturing another vessel for ransom, but were instead, intercepted by the HMS Chatham of the U.K. Royal Navy. The remaining pirate from the attack on the USS Ashland, Abdi Abshir Osman, was sentenced to life plus 10 years.
In the attack on the USS Ashland — the Navy reported at the time— at approximately 5:00 a.m. local time April 10, USS Ashland (LSD 48), was fired upon by a skiff manned by suspected pirates in the Gulf of Aden, approximately 330 nautical miles off the coast of Djibouti.
During the attack, Ashland received small arms fire on the port side from the six man crew of suspected pirates aboard the skiff. Ashland, in accordance with her rules of engagement, returned fire.
USS Ashland fired two rounds at the skiff from her MK-38 Mod 2, 25mm gun. The skiff caught fire and the suspected pirates abandoned the skiff. Ashland deployed her rigid-hull inflatable boats (RHIBs) to assist the pirates who were in the water near their skiff.
Once it was verified that the suspected pirates no longer had weapons on their person, all six were brought on board Ashland where they received medical care. There was no apparent damage to USS Ashland, and there were no injuries to any members of her crew.
U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jason R. Zalasky