Tanker Explosion Survivors Testify

(Newport News-AP) -- The first of four survivors of a tanker that exploded and sank off the Virginia coast testified [Friday] before a federal grand jury after being granted immunity from prosecution.

Federal prosecutors subpoenaed the four survivors after the men
refused to cooperate with the Coast Guard's investigation of the
February 28th explosion that killed three people and left 18 missing and presumed dead.

No cause for the explosion has been given.

Attorneys for the crewmen of the Singapore-flagged Bow Mariner sought to quash the subpoena. But the judge ruled [Thursday] that the men would be required to testify if they were given immunity.

Attorneys for the man who testified [Friday] would NOT comment on
his statements to the grand jury.

The three other survivors of the tanker explosion are expected
to testify next week in Norfolk.

(Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

AP-NY-04-09-04 2007EDT

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