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Malaysia thwarts tugboat hijack attempt, arrests 4 pirates

Published on Oct 20, 2012 11:43 AM

KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) - Malaysian authorities have arrested four Indonesian pirates who tried to hijack a tugboat and barge off Borneo island in the first such attack there this year, an official said on Saturday.

The machete-wielding men boarded the Malaysian vessel off Sarawak state on Thursday with most of the crew of ten managing to lock themselves inside the tugboat and raise the alarm, Abim Sungom of the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency said.

Authorities captured four suspects from the barge loaded with containers while several others escaped.

The four were in custody and are being investigated for robbery, Mr Abim said, adding the incident was the first attack off Sarawak this year.

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