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Real-life pirates terrorize New Mexico man

Tom Joles
January 20, 2017 07:04 AM

Merchant marine captain Mike Brown spends his summers in Las Vegas, New Mexico and his winters on his sailboat. On Thursday, he described why he thought he might be a goner when he encountered real-life pirates.

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Brown's boat is named Reflections. He's been doing a lot of reflecting since Friday when he said he and a female dive instructor were sailing off the coast of Honduras. It had been a long 10 hours of sailing when they realized they had company.

“Out of the corner of our eye, right out of the sun, a fishing boat,” he said. “Within five seconds, they sideswiped our boat. Two guys jumped on with pistols."

They took complete control, Brown said. Then four other guys jumped on the boat. In moments, six armed men were aboard, and he had two semi-automatic pistols pointed at him.

“I was trying to figure out if they were going to shoot us right away or if they were going to let us live,” he said. “After about a minute, I realized if I was calm and didn't challenge them, they didn't really want to kill us.

“I took a very permissive posture [and] let them have what they wanted. I was ordered in the back of the boat and they kept both guns on me. They took her down below and got the money.”

Brown realized that maybe the best way to get the pirates off his boat was to offer up his dinghy. He did, so they cut it loose.

“Then they had a problem because the dinghy floated away, so they had to get off my boat and go chase it,” Brown said. “So they all jumped off the boat with the items they had and then went and chased the valuable item, which was the dinghy and motor, about $8,000.”

The pirates were gone, but Brown and the dive instructor still had to get to a safe port about 70 miles away. Without navigation equipment, which had been stolen, they had to survive a storm with 20-foot waves.

They eventually made it to Roatan, Honduras, where they're relieved to be alive.

Credits

Tom Joles

Copyright 2017 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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