U.S. Joint Caribbean Operations Capture 3700 Pounds of Cocaine

A U.S. Customs and Border Protection Air and Marine Operations DHC-8 interdicts a suspected drug smuggling vessel in the eastern Caribbean Sea. (File Photo: U.S. Customs and Border Protection/Air and Marine Operations)
File Photo: U.S. Customs and Border Protection/Air and Marine Operations

CBP Air and Marine Operations teamed up with other federal departments and a foreign government to seize more than 3,700 pounds of cocaine during a 10-day period. The joint air and sea operation in the eastern Caribbean Sea resulted in the arrest of 19 suspected drug smugglers.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Air and Marine Operations (AMO) agents teamed up with the U.S. Coast Guard, the U.S. Navy, and the Dutch Coast Guard to interdict seven drug smuggling operations off the coast of Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic, according to information obtained from CBP officials. The interdictions led to the seizure of $64 million worth of cocaine and the arrest of 19 people suspected of trafficking the drugs.

CBP officials report the utilization of the following air and sea assets in the two-week operation:

  • CBP Air and Marine Operations DHC-8 and UH-60 aircraft
  • Coast Guard Cutter Reliance
  • Coast Guard Cutter William Trump
  • Coast Guard Cutter Joseph Napier
  • Coast Guard Cutter Joseph Doyle
  • Coast Guard Cutter Donald Horsley
  • Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter
  • USS Comstock
  • A Dutch coast guard DH-8 aircraft

“The fight against drug cartels in the Caribbean Sea requires unity of effort in all phases from detection, monitoring, and interdictions, to criminal prosecutions by international partners and U.S. Attorneys Offices in districts across the nation,” CBP officials said in a written statement. “The law enforcement phase of counter-smuggling operations in the Caribbean Sea is conducted under the authority of the Coast Guard 7th District, headquartered in Miami, Florida. The interdictions, including the actual boardings, are led and conducted by members of the U.S. Coast Guard.”

A report obtained from CBP shows that during Fiscal Year 2020, which ended on September 30, AMO agents working with non-CBP agencies seized more than 113,000 pounds of cocaine. During the first two months of FY21, AMO assisted in the seizure of more than 23,500 pounds of cocaine.

Bob Price serves as associate editor and senior news contributor for the Breitbart Texas-Border team. He is an original member of the Breitbart Texas team. Price is a regular panelist on Fox 26 Houston’s Sunday-morning talk show, What’s Your Point? Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX, Parler @BobPrice, and Facebook.

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