Ten Somalis accused of hijacking a UAE ship should receive the death penalty, the public prosecutor said yesterday.
The Federal Court heard the men were guilty of crimes "repulsive to the human self" and deserved the maximum penalty available.
The prosecutor recited a verse from the Quran: "The only reward of those who make war upon Allah and His messenger and strive after corruption in the land will be that they will be killed or crucified, or have their hands and feet on alternate sides cut off, or will be expelled out of the land."
He added: "Islam has set Al Haraba [the penalties mentioned in the verse] as part of Sharia penalties out of concern for society."
The prosecution has presented the case as a ta'azeeri, or secular, crime. This means the maximum penalty would be a death sentence.
But should the court decide to try the case under Sharia, a public punishment could take place.
The prosecutor said the men "cut off all the cables for telecoms and navigation, set up fires ... placed bombs in the chimneys and caused the injury of two crew members - an Egyptian and a Syrian."
Counter-terrorism units stormed the oil carrier MV Arrilah in April after it was hijacked in the Arabian Sea, east of Oman, en route from Australia to Jebel Ali.
Ahmed Al Othali, representing the 10 accused, said the case files did not include a technical report proving bombs and firearms were used.
He asked for a copy and for the court to adjourn the case. The judge said they would resume on May 1.