Trade

'Welcome To Jamal's Pirate Action Group'

Pirates have form letters.

Here, via Reuters, are excerpts from a letter sent to the owner of a hijacked oil tanker.

The cover sheet, in memo format, is addressed "To Whom It May Concern" with the subject line "Congratulations to the Company/Owner."

"Having seen when my Pirate Action Group (P.A.G) had controlled over your valuable vessel we are saying to you Company/Owner welcome to Jamal's Pirate Action Group (J.P.A.G) and you have to follow by our law to return back your vessel and crew safely," the memo begins.

"Do not imagine that we are making to you intimidation," the memo says, before signing off with "Best regards" and the signature of Jamal Faahiye Culusow, the General Commander of the Group.

Lest there be any doubt about who Jamal is or what he does, his signature is accompanied by his seal — yes, Jamal has a stamped s e al — depicting a skull and crossed swords with the name of the group.

Reuters notes that this particular hijacking ended peacefully, but doesn't say whether a ransom was paid.

For More: Listen to our interview with a shipping company executive who has negotiated with pirates.

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