Hijackings: Seeking Haven in Havana

Seeking Haven in Havana

When the lanky prisoner aboard a New Year's Eve flight from St. Croix to New York City complained of feeling sick, one of his three guards escorted him to the lavatory. The prisoner emerged brandishing a snub-nosed handgun. He disarmed his guards--two of whom had black belts in karate--and ordered the pilot to fly the American Airlines DC-10 to Cuba. Thus Ishmail Muslim Ali, 37, formerly known as Ishmael La Beet, once again made headlines as the Virgin Islands' most notorious criminal.

Ali sent shock waves through the Virgin Islands in 1972 when he and four accomplices mowed down eight people...

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