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U.S. Coast Guard make multi-million-dollar bust in the Caribbean after intercepting go-fast vessel

April 28, 2018  |  Posted by: Francesca Falzarano
U.S. Coast Guard make multi-million-dollar bust in the Caribbean after intercepting go-fast vessel

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Two smugglers, 491.5 kilos of cocaine and 9.2 kilos of heroin worth approximately $13.3 million were seized by the U.S. Coast Guard in the Caribbean Sea off Puerto Rico, during a recent inter-agency bust by Caribbean Border Inter-agency Group partner agencies.

According to the Daily Herald, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Caribbean Air and Marine Branch (CAMB) maritime aircraft initially detected the 30-foot go-fast vessel with two individuals on board and visible packages on deck, south of Puerto Rico.

U.S. Coast Guard staff in the San Juan sector redirected the Coast Guard Cutter Richard Dixon to intercept the vessel while CAMB and Puerto Rico Police Joint Forces of Rapid Action placed marine units that were ready to respond.

The Richard Dixon interdicted the boat, arrested the alleged smugglers, identified as a U.S. citizen from Puerto Rico and a citizen of the Dominican Republic – and seized multiple bundles of contraband, which tested for cocaine.

“This case highlights the resolve and collective efforts of Coast Guard, federal and local law enforcement partners to strengthen the security of the Caribbean border and protect our citizens from drug smuggling that threatens our shores,” Captain Eric King, the commander of San Juan sector with the US Coast Guard, said.

“This interdiction resulted in the detention of two smugglers and kept a major drug shipment off the streets.”

Reinaldo López, the US DEA Caribbean Division Associate Special Agent in Charge, noted that inter-agency missions to disrupt and dismantle transnational drug-trafficking organizations will continue.

“DEA warns traffickers, especially across the Caribbean, that we are hunting them down in an all-year-round open season.”

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