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Irrawaddy River ‘Pirates’ Arrested Near Mandalay

12 March 2014

Police have arrested 19 people accused of engaging in acts of piracy on the Irrawaddy River, the Myanmar Times reports. The 10 men and nine women were detained south of Mandalay and charged with theft. Their exploits had earned them the nickname “Irrawaddy Somali,” a reference to pirates off the coast of the African nation that frequently harass seafaring vessels in the Indian Ocean. The group reportedly operated between midnight and 5am, using small boats to stop and board vessels transiting the river. The arrests came last week when more than 100 regional police officers swarmed two hideouts where the alleged pirates would hole up during daylight hours.