US Coast Guard Seizes 18.5 Tons of Cocaine, Offloads in South Florida

Lee Herald Favicon 16Seized from 20 separate vessel interdictions along the Central and South American, the United States Coast Guard offloaded 18.5 tons (16,856 kilograms) of Cocaine in Port Everglades on Thursday.

US Coast Guard Cocaine seizure
Image courtesy of Defense Video Imagery

A joint effort including the Royal Canadian Navy derailed the delivery of an estimated $498 million worth of the drug.

“The 18.5 tons of seized cocaine coming off our decks today is the product of partnerships and the collaboration of U.S. Southern Command, Joint Interagency Task Force-South, the Departments of Homeland Security, Defense, State and Justice, the Canadian Navy and many of our international maritime service partners,” said Captain Scott Clendenin, Commanding Officer of Coast Guard Cutter Hamilton. “Building international partnerships is at the heart of this effort. No one nation alone can prevent the deleterious impact of drug smuggling on our borders and on the region as a whole. Our efforts to interdict modern maritime smugglers involves intricately choreographed actions of joint, interagency and international operations centers, aircraft and vessels operating in concert against stealthy and well-funded international criminal smuggling organizations.”

The 20 vessel interdictions, inclusive of vessel boardings, were conducted by the United States Coast Guard Cutters Hamilton, Mohawk, Dependable, Valiant, Campbell, Resolute and James, along with the Royal Canadian Ship HMCS Saskatoon.

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