NEWS
09/09/2018 14:52 BST

Royal Navy Officers Arrested In Florida Following Reports Of Drunken Behaviour

One officer had to be tasered.

Steve Parsons - PA Images via Getty Images
HMS Queen Elizabeth pictured leaving Portsmouth Harbour in Hampshire

Royal Navy sailors have been arrested following reports of drunken behaviour while docked in Florida.

The Ministry of Defence said six personnel were arrested but a spokeswoman could not confirm whether they were from the £3.1 billion HMS Queen Elizabeth or other support ships.

Multiple media reports suggested the arrested officers were from HMS Queen Elizabeth. The 65,000 tonne aircraft carrier, nicknamed Big Lizzie, arrived in the US this week.

The sailors were reportedly on shore leave and were arrested on mostly drunk and disorderly charges, according to The Florida Times-Union.

The newspaper reported Sergeant Larry Smith, of the Jacksonville Beach Police Department, as saying three of the sailors were also charged with resisting arrest, with one sailor having to be stunned with a taser.

A Royal Navy spokeswoman said: “We can confirm that a number of naval personnel are assisting US police with their enquiries – 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.”

HMS Queen Elizabeth left Portsmouth Naval Base on August 18 and docked at Mayport, Florida just under three weeks later.

The purpose of her visit is to conduct trials with US F-35B fighter jets, which are expected to carry out 500 landings.