Photo: U.S. Coast Guard
A total of 1,200 kilos (2,643 pounds) of cocaine were seized in two operations carried out by the U.S. Coast Guard in waters of the Caribbean.
With an estimated street value of $40 million, the stash seized in Operation Martillo (Hammer) was unloaded at Port Everglades, north of Miami.
The two interceptions were carried out on Nov. 2 and Nov. 6, and both were the work of a Coast Guard team aboard the Royal Dutch Navy’s HNLMS Amsterdam.
In the first instance, the Coast Guard team came upon a vessel from which suspicious packages were being thrown in the water when it was sighted.
While the go-fast got away, the Coast Guard unit “recovered 19 packages which later tested positive for cocaine,” the USCG said
Four days later during the same patrol, another go-fast was spotted.
After employing warning signals, the HNLMS Amsterdam’s embarked helicopter crew was able to shoot a disabling round into the engine, causing the go-fast to stop.
The Coast Guard personnel boarded “the suspect vessel and recovered 22 packages that later tested positive for cocaine. The three suspected smugglers were transferred to the HNLMS Amsterdam along with the contraband,” the USCG said.