I’m writing a story, and I can’t seem to find an answer to this question, and I’m hoping one of you might be able to help me. (Joe? Alex?)
A murder is committed on an American ship in international waters. The ship is too far away from shore to simply return — it will take several days at least, during which time the murderer may strike again.
What can the captain do under these circumstances? Can he detain people of interest without giving them access to a lawyer? Can he order everyone to stay in their cabins? If the murderer is found, can he be detained with a citizen’s arrest?
Here’s the other question: what would happen on a spaceship? Spaceships are subject, as far as I understand, to a modified version of admiralty law. If someone was murdered on a spaceship, what could the captain and/or crew do about it?