Italy arrests smugglers accused of killing dozens

MILAN (AP) -- Italian authorities have arrested five alleged human traffickers accused of murder in the deaths of dozens migrants who were either stabbed to death or perished of engine fume inhalation inside the overcrowded hold of a smuggling boat.

Italian police said the five people arrested in Sicily on Tuesday are accused of stabbing and throwing overboard some 60 men and women after passengers tried to escape the cargo hold, where many had been imprisoned.

No bodies have been found, but Italian authorities say survivors have reported seeing "friends and relatives, stabbed and stunned" floating in the sea, but were under threat and unable to help.

More than 550 were rescued Saturday while the bodies of 30, many of whom asphyxiated inside the hold, were recovered.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Stories

  • Trial Beginning
    Twelve Seattle police officers will begin using new body-worn cameras next week

  • Week in Photos
    Penguins, cheetahs and Santa make it in this week's photos
ATTENTION COMMENTERS: We've changed our comments, but want to keep you in the conversation.
Please login below with your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Disqus account. Existing MyNorthwest account holders will need to create a new Disqus account or use one of the social logins provided below. Thank you.
comments powered by Disqus
Sign up for breaking news e-mail alerts from
In the community
Do you know an exceptional citizen who has impacted and inspired others?
KIRO Radio and WSECU would like to recognize six oustanding citizens this year. Nominate them to be recognized and to receive a $2,000 charitable grant.