Fishing crew member charged with murder in attack at sea

Marcus Smart Photo: AP
Marcus Smart

September 25, 2018 10:52 AM

NANTUCKET, Mass. (AP) — A member of a fishing boat crew attacked his fellow crew members at sea with a knife and a hammer, killing one of them, federal prosecutors said.

Franklin Freddy Meave Vazquez, 27, was charged with murder and attempted murder in connection with the attack Sunday on the Virginia-based fishing vessel Captain Billy Haver while it was underway about 55 miles off Nantucket, Massachusetts, the U.S. attorney's office for Boston said in a statement.

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Vazquez will appear in federal court in Boston at a time to be determined. He assaulted another crew member with a knife in one hand and a hammer in the other, authorities said.

That victim saw another crew member on the deck bleeding, and Vazquez then struck a third colleague before he was chased up the mast in an attempt to avoid capture, authorities said.

Authorities did not say what sparked the attacks.

The captain of the seven-member crew placed a call on the distress channel, and the German cruise ship, Mein Schiff 6, responded, taking two of the injured fishermen on board, prosecutors said. The ship's doctor pronounced one of them dead.

Vazquez is a Mexican citizen and had been living in the U.S. illegally, prosecutors said. He had been arrested in March in Newport News, Virginia, on an abduction charge.

The Associated Press could not locate a lawyer for him early Tuesday.

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(Copyright 2018 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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