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Coast Guard Cocaine Bust Nets 12K Pounds of Drugs

Image: Coast Guard Cocaine Bust Nets 12K Pounds of Drugs
Crew from the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Stratton stop a Self-Propelled Semi Submersible (SPSS) off the coast of Central America in this U.S. Coast Guard picture taken July 18, 2015 and released August 5, 2015. (Reuters/U.S. Coast Guard/Petty Officer 2nd Class LaNola Stone/Handout)

By    |   Friday, 07 Aug 2015 12:42 PM

The U.S. Coast Guard seized a homemade semi-submersible in the Pacific Ocean last month and took in 12,000 pounds of cocaine worth about $181 million.

Footage posted online Wednesday shows a Coast Guard team boarding the vessel, which was discovered in the eastern Pacific Ocean on July 18 by the U.S. Navy, and apprehending four smugglers.

The Coast Guard cutter Stratton was deployed to the spot, about 200 miles south of Mexico, and found four men and a total of 16,000 pounds of cocaine on board, CNN reported.

Six tons of cocaine were taken off the boat, while two tons were left on to help with balance as the 40-foot vessel was towed ashore, the news organization said. But the boat filled with water and sank, along with 4,000 pounds of cocaine.

The Coast Guard has been touting a large number of drug busts in recent months. The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Midgett was honored in late June for its 71-day deployment off the coast of Central America that netted 12,100 pounds of cocaine from seven vessels, a USCG release said.

"This is the most successful counter-drug patrol I’ve experienced in more than 26 years of service,” Capt. Brendan C. McPherson, Midgett’s commanding officer, said in the release. “Our success is a testament to our resolve to help defeat the illicit networks that fuel instability within the region and threaten our neighbors."

 


"The U.S. faces significant risks to regional security and prosperity brought on by the rising threat of Transnational Organized Crime networks," added Rear Adm. Meredith Austin, deputy commander, Coast Guard Pacific Area. "Criminal networks in the Western Hemisphere draw immense profits from drug trafficking. By interdicting these illegal drug loads far offshore, before it can get into the pipeline within Central America, we not only protect our own U.S. border but also the maritime borders of our Western Hemisphere neighbors."

CNN reported that as of April, the Coast Guard had seized 28 tons of cocaine so far in its fiscal year, which ends Sept. 30. That was the highest amount since 2009 for drug seizures.

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The U.S. Coast Guard seized a homemade semi-submersible in the Pacific Ocean last month and took in 12,000 pounds of cocaine worth about $181 million.
coast guard, cocaine, seized, pacific ocean
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2015-42-07
Friday, 07 Aug 2015 12:42 PM
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