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Seychelles; United Nations: Piracy Prosecution Center to Be Established

(May 7, 2010) With the support of the United Nations, Seychelles will establish a center to prosecute pirates apprehended by the European Union Naval Force Somalia Operation (EU NAVFOR). Located to the south of the Horn of Africa in the Indian Ocean, the island nation has recently been a location for increased piracy. (Seychelles to Launch UN-Backed Courts to Combat Piracy, UN NEWS CENTRE, May 5, 2010, available at

The center will be the result of cooperation between Seychelles, the Counter-Piracy Program of the EU, and the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). The goal is to provide assistance to all aspects of the criminal justice system involved in fighting piracy, including police, the coastguard, prosecutors, courts, and prisons, to make sure that the piracy cases can be processed. (Seychelles to Establish Centre for Piracy Trials, May 5, 2010, available at UNODC website,

In March 2010, 11 pirates were tried in the Seychelles under a recently amended provision of the criminal code. That provision gives Seychelles universal jurisdiction for piracy. The defendants had been arrested by the Seychelles' coastguard with assistance from EU NAVFOR, and the judge and prosecutors had been given special training in handling piracy cases. With additional funding from Australia, Canada, and Germany, the police and coastguard have also undergone special training in procedures for the handover of evidence and suspects and the coastguard has acquired navigational and tactical information equipment. (Id.)

The center will be the second such anti-piracy institution; one has already been set up in Kenya. (UN NEWS CENTRE, supra.)