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Somali Pirate Kingpin Announces Official Retirement

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By MarEx 2013-01-11 11:43:00

A Somali pirate kingpin claims he is retiring from piracy.

BBC News reports that Mohamed Abdi Hassan, nicknamed "Afweyneh" meaning Big Mouth in Somali, has agreed to stop after eight years in the business. He made an official announcement in a Central Somali town where hostages have often been held.

Local officials stated that other top pirates had also agreed to disarm. Their freedom on the open ocean has been impeded with maritime security efforts, resulting in a loss of profit.

A 2012 United Nations report alleged that Afweyneh was one of the most notorious and influential leaders of the Hobyo-Harardhere Piracy Network. At one point, a former president had given him diplomatic status and a diplomatic passport as a bribe to give up his pirate network.

Afweyneh and his pirate gang were reportedly responsible for the 2009 capture of Ukrainian ship MV Faina, the 2008 capture of the Saudi-owned Sirius Star supertanker, and the attack of a British couple who were held for more than a year after they were seized from their yacht off the Seychelles in 2009. He made millions off ransoms throughout his criminal career.