The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Pelican offloaded approximately one ton of cocaine, worth more than $23 million wholesale, and three suspected smugglers Monday in St. Petersburg that was seized in the Caribbean Sea.
While patrolling during Operation Caribbe, Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) Moncton, with an embarked U.S. Coast Guard Pacific Area Tactical Law Enforcement detachment crew, seized more than 834 kgs of cocaine from a suspect vessel Nov. 11 in the Caribbean Sea, south of Jaragua, Dominican Republic.
While working under the direction of U.S. Joint Interagency Task Force South (JIATF-S), Coast Guard law enforcement members boarded the go-fast boat and discovered 30 bales of cocaine and apprehended three suspected smugglers.
The contraband and detainees were transferred to RFA Mounts Bay, a Royal Fleet Auxiliary Bay-class auxiliary landing ship dock.
(Furthermore, the crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Spencer offloads approximately 10 tons of cocaine and 23 kilograms of heroin at Port Everglades, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2017. The offload represents 14 separate, suspected drug smuggling vessel interdictions by the Coast Guard in international waters off the Eastern Pacific Ocean. Courtesy of Michael McIntee and U.S. Coast Guard by Petty Officer 2nd Class Jonathan Lally. Posted on Nov 14, 2017)
Numerous U.S. agencies from the Departments of Defense, Justice and Homeland Security are involved in the effort to combat transnational organized crime.
The Coast Guard, Navy, Customs and Border Protection, FBI, Drug Enforcement Agency, and Immigration and Customs Enforcement along with allied and international partner agencies play a role in counter-drug operations.
The Coast Guard increased U.S. and allied presence in the Eastern Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Basin, which are known drug transit zones off of Central and South America, as part of its Western Hemisphere Strategy.
(See crewmembers from the Coast Guard Cutter Pelican, arrive and offload approximately one ton of cocaine, worth an estimated $23 million wholesale, in St. Petersburg, Monday, Nov. 20, 2017. Courtesy of International Newz and YouTube)
During at-sea interdictions in international waters, a suspect vessel is initially located and tracked by allied, military or law enforcement personnel.
The interdictions, including the actual boarding, are led and conducted by U.S. Coast Guardsmen.
The cutter Pelican is an 87-foot Coast Patrol Boat homeported in St. Petersburg.
The Coast Guard’s Pacific Area Tactical Law Enforcement Team (PACTACLET) is a unit of specially trained law enforcement officers and petty officers who routinely deploy on U.S and allied ship’s on the high seas to combat transnational crime and smuggling operations.
PACTACLET is based out of Southern California.