In Brief

British sailors arrested over drunken behaviour in Florida

The six Royal Navy crew members were reportedly on shore leave from HMS Queen Elizabeth

Royal Navy sailors have been arrested in Florida on drunk and disorderly charges, local police said.

Six crew members, reportedly from HMS Queen Elizabeth, were arrested while on shore leave on Wednesday.

Three of them were also charged with resisting arrest, with one having to be stunned with a taser, Sergeant Larry Smith, of the Jacksonville Beach Police Department, told the Florida Times-Union.

Witnesses reported seeing the sailors urinating from a pub balcony into the street, the Daily Mail reports.

“The Royal Navy guys came in like a flood, boom,” the manager of a local bar told the newspaper. “Like they had suddenly been let out of a cage and now they were free. It was unreal and we just weren't prepared for it.”

A spokesperson for the Royal Navy said that the crew were “assisting US police with their enquiries,” adding that it would be “inappropriate” to comment further at this time.

“The Naval Service places great importance on maintaining the highest possible standards of behaviour from its personnel at all times,” they said.

HMS Queen Elizabeth left Portsmouth for its first transatlantic voyage on August 18, docking in Mayport, Florida last week in order to conduct trials with F-35B fighter jets.

The £3.1bn warship, nicknamed Big Lizzie, is expected to be operational in 2020, when it will be bound for destinations ranging from the Persian Gulf to the South China Sea.

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