Saturday, July 19, 2008

Joe Cool Killer to Plead Guilty

On September 23, 2007, an abandoned chartered fishing boat called the Joe Cool was discovered by the U.S. Coast Guard floating 60 miles south of Bimini. Several hours later Kirby Archer and Guillermo Zarbozo were discovered in the vessel's life raft some 10 miles away. Initially, Zarbozo told authorities the boat, which was headed from Miami to the Bahamas had been hijacked by pirates who fatally shot the Captain and his wife and threw the remaining two crew members overboard. Zarbozo claimed he and Archer had been spared. The bodies of the Captain, his wife, and the two crew members were never discovered.

Authorities were naturally suspicious of the story, and, after an investigation, concluded that Archer and Zarbozo killed the four in an attempt to take the boat to Cuba. Archer had once served at Guantanamo Bay, and Zabozo originated from Cuba. Each desired to return to the island.

According to one of the victim's relatives, Archer has agreed to accept a guilty plea to first-degree murder charges in return for the U.S. Attorney's Office agreeing to not seek the death penalty. Zarabozo continues to maintain his innocence, but one must imagine he will entertain a plea offer now that the only other person alive who knows what happened on the Joe Cool will testify against him at trial.

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