Famous Russian lawers express totally contradicting opinions about the recent release of Somali pirates who seized a Russian tanker.
The Somali pirates seized the Moscow University on Wednesday, but it was freed in a 22-minute operation involving Russian Navy commandos from the Marshal Shaposhnikov.
The pirates were eventually released. A Defense Ministry source told RIA Novosti that they were sent off in a small inflatable boat, having been disarmed and stripped of navigational equipment.
Alexander Dobrovinsky, who represents Russian celebrities involved in divorce proceedings, said the Russian servicemen's actions were in line with hands-on experiences.
"There are two cases when the legal norms expire - mutiny aboard ship and piracy. Wartime laws then come into effect," he said. "According to the moral code, the captain and the crew have the right to act towards pirates in accordance with common sense."
Ruslan Zakaluzhny disagreed, arguing that following legal norms must come first in any situation. "It's difficult for me to comment on this situation in detail, but it is obvious that the pirates had to be dealt with according to international legal norms."
"The Russian servicemen had to establish the facts of the violation of the law and transfer the detained with the gathered evidence to the law enforcement bodies of the nearest country," said Omar Akhmetov, who defended one of the accused in Arctic Sea cargo vessel seizure in 2009.
However, Sergei Goltyayev, the lawyer of another of the accused in the Arctic Sea seizure, said there would have been a range of proceeding problems in attempting to bring the pirates to justice.
"It can be assumed that the seizure of the vessel was made in the territorial waters of Somalia, and then the law prohibits to judge the criminals in a third country," said the lawyer, who also noted that identification of the suspects would have proved difficult.
Somalia has had no functioning central government for two decades.
MOSCOW, May 7 (RIA Novosti)