The judge has ruled Somalia’s territorial waters extend only 12 miles from shore, allowing the U.S. to continue its prosecution against the three.
The four hostages were shot and killed in 2011 as the U.S. Navy ship closed on the kidnappers.
Defense attorneys for the men charged in the killings contended Somalia’s territorial waters extend 200 miles from shore, based on its domestic legislation. But prosecutors noted Somalia signed a treaty agreeing to a 12-mile limit.
U.S. District Judge Rebecca Beach Smith denied a motion seeking to have the murder charges dismissed. If convicted, the men could face the death penalty.
Alshahid and Agencies