A Danish warship patrolling the Gulf of Aden to guard against piracy actually ended up rescuing seven suspected Somali pirates who were adrift with a broken motor on their boat, the International Herald Tribune quoted the Danish Navy Friday.

The Danish sailors sank the pirates' speedboat after bringing them aboard their own ship. The combat support vessel called the HDMS Absalon picked up the hungry, thirsty Somalis about 90 miles off the coast of Yemen after their distress signal was spotted, the Tribune reported.

The sailors confiscated rocket-propelled grenades and AK-47 assault rifles found on board but were unable to arrest the men because they were not caught in the act of piracy.

"We had a situation where these guys were shipwrecked persons," Lieutenant Commander Jesper Lynge, a Danish Navy spokesman, told the Tribune. "But we haven't caught them in an act of piracy, and what their main purpose was — your guess is as good as mine."

The Danish crew handed the Somalis over early Friday to the Yemen coast guard.

Click here to read more on this story from The International Herald Tribune.