FYI: September 2002
|FYI — September 2002|
|By Brad Dunn|
the Price for Murder
In June a Brazilian judge found all six members of the "pirate" gang guilty of murder. The stiffest sentence fell on the gang's leader and triggerman, Ricardo Colares Tavares, who will sit in jail for at least 36 years and nine months. The other five each face sentences of no less than 26 years and eight months in prison, according to New Zealand's Daily Telegraph.
On December 5, 2001, the gang boarded Blake's exploration yacht Seamaster with the intent of robbing her while she was anchored at the mouth of the Amazon River. Blake confronted the bandits, however, and it cost him his life. The 23-year-old Tavares admitted to firing two fatal shots into Blake's back. The gruesome crime sent shockwaves through the boating community and sparked public mourning worldwide for the beloved 53-year-old adventurer.
During the trial, the defense claimed that Tavares was mentally ill when he shot Blake, but the judge disallowed the argument. The defense also argued that it was Blake who fired the first shot. The judge struck down the claim as well, citing evidence from the crime scene and the sequence of events that came to light during courtroom testimony. Moreover, he implied that it was ludicrous for the defendants to claim self-defense, since they were the ones who perpetrated an armed robbery. Instead, all six defendants were found guilty of latrocinio, "armed robbery resulting in death."
Shelves: The Fisherman's Ocean
$19.95, paperback. Stackpole Books.
This article originally appeared in the January 2003 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.