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US Warship Tracking SoCal Couple Hijacked By Somali Pirates

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The Quest, a hijacked yacht with four Americans on board that was attacked by Somali pirates on Friday morning off the coast of Oman, is now being trailed by at least one U.S. warship and helicopters somewhere near Yemen and Somalia, reports ABC Local.

The goal is to get the hostages off the yacht alive before the pirates make landfall in Somalia. "If the Quest reaches Somalia's shores the four American hostages would likely be taken inland, where a fast resolution is much less likely. A British sailing couple who were released in November spent 388 days in pirate captivity,"notes the Daily News. Currently 660 sailors are being held captive in Somalia. None of them are American.

Scott and Jean Adam left Marina Del Rey in 2004 and have been sailing the world distributing bibles. Washington couple Phyllis Mackay and Bob Riggle recently joined the Adams aboard their yacht to participate in an international yacht race called Blue Water Rally, however, according to race organizers, the foursome left the race Feb. 15 "to take an independent course from India to Oman," reports the OC Register.

Earlier this week a Somali pirate who identified himself by the name Hassan told the AP that Americans would be targeted in retaliation for the recent sentencing by a New York court of a pirate to 33 years in prison for his role in the '09 hijacking of the Maersk Alabama.

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Hassan reportedly told the AP that Americans would suffer "regrettable consequences." The commander of the European Union anti-piracy force told the AP that pirates have "recently tied hostages upside down and dragged them in the sea, locked them in freezers, beaten them and used plastic ties around their genitals," reports the OC Register.

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