Attorney General Jeff Sessions traveled to San Diego, California, Wednesday to tout the record-breaking amount of drugs seized in Fiscal Year 2017.
During the visit, Sessions watched as Coast Guard officials unloaded more than 50,000 pounds of cocaine and heroin seized from drug traffickers at sea. The drugs are worth an estimated $680 million, according to FOX 5 San Diego.
Overall, in the 2017 Fiscal Year, officials revealed that a record-breaking 455,000 pounds plus of drugs had already been seized. In 2016, that number amounted to 443,000 pounds. The 2017 haul is worth an estimated $6.1 billion.
“By preventing overdoses and stopping new addictions before they start, enforcing our drug laws saves lives,” Sessions said in a statement. “I commend every service member who has helped us in our mission to keep the American people safe, and I thank them for this indispensable contribution to public safety.”
Officials with the Coast Guard also revealed that more than 600 alleged drug traffickers have already been arrested in 2017.
“These drugs represent the scale of the threat transnational organized crime poses to our nation and to all peaceful nations of the Western Hemisphere,” Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Paul Zukunft said in a statement. “The Coast Guard and Justice Department, along with interagency partners, are determined to commit our efforts to detect, interdict, investigate and prosecute the entirety of these criminal networks and end the drug fueled instability and violence in the region.”
Sessions’ visit to San Diego to raise awareness to the drug problem crippling the U.S. comes just as New York City officials and federal agents seized a record-breaking 270 pounds of fentanyl–enough to kill 32 million people–Breitbart Texas reported.
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) estimated that in 2015, at least 52,000 Americans died from drug-overdoses, an industry that Mexican and Latin American drug cartels largely control in the U.S.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart Texas. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.