An emotional Judge Loretta A. Preska choked back tears Wednesday as she criticized the violence inflicted on the victims of the Somali pirate she was about to send to prison.

Reading letters from Captain Richard Phillips of the Maersk Alabama and others who paid the price for the 2009 Indian Ocean hijacking led by Abduwali Muse, Preska’s voice shook with anger over the damage done by Muse and his three accomplices.