Pirates Free Tanker

MANILA, Philippines (AP) - A Philippine shipping company says
Somali pirates have freed a tanker and its crew of 23 Filipinos
after holding them hostage for more than five months.

Capt. Dexter Custodio said the vessel was released Tuesday.
Custodio is the spokesman for Sagana Shipping Inc., owner of the MT
Stolt Strength.

The tanker was seized Nov. 10, 2008, when Somali pirates swarmed
aboard as it sailed through the Gulf of Aden while hauling a cargo
of phosphoric acid destined for Japan.

Custodio refused to say if a ransom had been paid.


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