SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8) - A 53-year-old Coast Guard cutter offloaded more than 5,200 pounds of cocaine worth more than $78 million Tuesday following a counter drug patrol in international waters off Central America.
The crew also apprehended six suspected drug smugglers who will be prosecuted in the United States.
“The crew of Active should be proud of all they’ve accomplished to combat dangerous transnational criminal organizations that spread violence and instability throughout the Western Hemisphere,” said Vice Adm. Fred Midgette, commander, U.S. Coast Guard Pacific Area. “Their ability to complete the mission on this aging platform is a testament their abilities as cuttermen and Devotion to Duty as Coast Guard women and men.”
Facebook Video: Coast Guard cutter offloaded more than 5,200 pounds of cocaine in San Diego Tuesday, May 29, 2018. (Courtesy: U.S. Coast Guard)
The drugs were intercepted during back-to-back counter drug patrols in international waters off Central America.
During their patrol, Active held three “panga” style vessels and one pleasure craft, resulting in the seizure of more than three tons of illicit narcotics worth an estimated $95 million in wholesale, and apprehended 11 suspected drug smugglers.
The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Active from Washington is responsible for the successful interdictions that were made on May 18 and May 19th.
The drugs will be turned over to federal agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration for destruction.
The Coast guard cutter Active is a Medium Endurance Cutter and currently operating beyond its expected 40-year service life. The MEC class is considered the backbone of the Coast Guard's fleet.
Those crews continue to patrol the drug transit zone in the Pacific Ocean near Central and South America with great success. In fact, MEC crews stopped nearly a third of all drugs seized by the U.S. Coast Guard in Fiscal Year 2017.
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