Somali man gets life sentence for yacht hijacking

NORFOLK, Va. — A Somali man has received a life sentence for his role in the hijacking of an American yacht.

A federal judge in Norfolk, Va., sentenced Said Abdi Fooley on Friday. He had pleaded guilty to piracy, which carries a mandatory life term.

U.S. District Judge Rebecca Beach Smith recommended the Bureau of Prisons consider Fooley’s language barrier when placing him so that he can further his education.

Fooley is among 11 men who pleaded guilty to piracy for hijacking the Quest off the coast of Africa in February 2011. The owners of the yacht, Jean and Scott Adam of Marina del Rey, Calif., and their friends Bob Riggle and Phyllis Macay of Seattle were fatally shot after negotiations with the U.S. Navy broke down.

Three other men face murder charges.

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