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Piracy incident in Trinidad, Dec 2009

Posted by on February 21, 2010

This was sent out on the Cruisers_Network_Online.

Subject: Re: Yacht robbery – 21st Dec
Just to keep everyone informed.
I spoke to the owner/capt, Robert Kienzle, of Triton in Grenada this
morning. Basic facts of the incident are as follows:
1) Attack position was 40 mls North of Trinidad on the rhumb line to Prickly Bay .
2) Pirate boat approached from behind, that is from the South.
3) Before boarding, shots were fired, one passing about 1/2 a meter from Robert at the helm.
4) 7 – 8 Spanish speaking men in pirogue, boarded by about 4 of them. Tied up and towel placed over heads.
5) When men were aboard Triton drifted with sails up and engine in neutral. Meanwhile, the pirogue circled Triton.
6) Triton stripped of “everything”. Crew unharmed.
7) Pirate boat left in South Westerly direction, that is, towards Venezuela .
7) Description of pirate boat: Old, wooden, blue/red pirogue type with 3 x 175 hp Yamaha outboards.
This morning I informed customs of the incident and I’m trying to get hold of the two coast guard officers (King and Stelling) that previously dealt with us on piracy matters. They are not there and the coastguardsman that I spoke to did not know when they’d be back. I’ll try again over the next few days.
A group of cruisers met this morning in the Roti Hut and I attended the meeting. They are understandably very concerned about the incident, but more so because YSATT is not giving information of such incidents. I explained the situation, but they are still (rightly) concerned. This has of course happened very suddenly and as we are on the brink of Christmas it could not be happening at a worse time.
I spoke to Peter Peake. He will ask their reception to inform boats heading North to be aware of the possibility of piracy. We will do the same and I’m hereby asking YSATT to make a general announcement on the net to this effect. For exact wording you are welcome to call me.
Merry Christmas to all.

The fishing boat model of three large outboards became fairly common after/during the ’80s, with the ‘commercial’ trade that developed during that time. Here is a photo that is representative of the type of propulsion.

Just kidding about that last part.

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