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Cuban coast guardsmen take patrol boat to Key West

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KEY WEST, Florida (CNN) -- Four camouflage-clad, Cuban coast guard members arrived Friday morning in Key West, where they told police they had raced across the Straits of Florida in a Cuban patrol boat they took while on duty, police said.

The men told Police Officer Matt Dorgan at 4 a.m. EST that they had left Cuba three hours earlier and tied up the 30-foot escape boat at a nearby dock, according to Key West Police Department spokeswoman Cynthia Edwards.

The boat was flying the Cuban flag, and one man told police he was a 14-year veteran of the Cuban coast guard.

The men were taken to the Monroe County Detention Center to await officers from the U.S. Border Patrol.

Edwards said one of the men allowed police to confiscate the Chinese handgun he was wearing in a holster. He had two loaded ammunition magazines.

The boat, which was discovered at Hyatt Resort marina, had a light bar with blue lights and twin 200-horsepower outboard engines. Officers found two AK-47s and eight loaded magazines on the boat, Edwards said.

The radio on the boat was monitoring the U.S. Coast Guard frequency.

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