US Coast Guard offloads cocaine valued at over US$160 million, nabs suspected smugglers
MIAMI, CMC – The United States Coast Guard says the crew of its Coast Guard Cutter Confidence on Tuesday offloaded in Miami more than 12,100 pounds of cocaine, worth more than US$160 million, that were seized in the Caribbean Sea.
Along with the illicit narcotics, the US Coast Guard said 17 suspected smugglers were apprehended and now face prosecution in US federal courts by the Department of Justice.
The US Coast Guard said it and partner agency crews interdicted the illegal drugs during nine separate cases in the Caribbean Sea.
“Our team worked extremely hard, day-in and day-out, to stop illicit narcotics from reaching the United States,” said Commander Thomas Martin, commanding officer of Confidence.
“I am honoured to serve with such a proficient crew and share in their success. Yesterday's contraband offload represents what can be achieved when US and international defence and law enforcement agencies work together to combat the entry of illicit drugs into the United States,” said Lieutenant Fernando Pla, duty enforcement officer for Coast Guard District Seven.
“This teamwork continues to deter the illicit drug trafficking market and is a testament to the hard work of these crews,” he added.
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