Panama to free bulk of N. Korea ship crew
PANAMA CITY — Panama's judicial authorities have ordered the release of 32 of 35 crew members of a North Korean ship detained in July for carrying hidden arms from Cuba, and they were working on the paperwork needed for them to leave.
Prosecutor Nahaniel Murgas on Thursday said the captain and two other crew members will remain to face arms trafficking charges.
He said a search of the ship turned up documents that showed “that the ship's captain, first officer and political officer had been given instructions about what to do if the illegal shipment was detected. There were certain recommendations.”
“Together with that were the statements by the rest of the crew, who said they were employees on the vessel but not responsible” for the shipment, he said. “It was based on that they decided to free the other 32.”
The Chong Chon Gang was carrying Cuban fighter jets and missiles. The owners agreed to pay a $670,000 fine this month to release the ship.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
- Lone gunman kills monument guard, attacks Canada’s Parliament
- Canadians more fearful, aware after ‘very rare’ attack in Ottawa
- Iraqi Kurds to send fighters to aid Kobani
- ISIS claims it grabs U.S. military ware
- 10 hurt in bombing at Cairo University
- Deepening U.S. commitment to Kobani ties Obama’s Islamic State effort to Kurds’ fate
- Libyan troops seek to retake Benghazi
- Loophole rewards expelled Nazi suspects with Social Security benefits
- Nasal cells help paralyzed man make history by walking
- American baby killed, 8 hurt as car plows into crowd at Jerusalem train station
- Kurds, U.S. warplanes run ISIS out of Syrian border town of Kobani