Coast Guard intercepts 11 migrants, 2 suspected smugglers near Miami

Migrant smuggling operation curtailed off Government Cut

The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Robert Yered help migrants transfer from the cutter's small boat to the cutter, Dec. 9, 2018, about 12 miles east of Miami. (Petty Officer 2nd Class Jonathan Lally)

MIAMI – The U.S. Coast Guard intercepted 11 migrants and two suspected smugglers Saturday in the waters off Miami.

According to a Coast Guard news release, the crew of the Coast Guard cutter Robert Yered spotted the 26-foot boat about 12 miles east of Government Cut.

Seven Haitians, three Bahamians, two Ecuadorians and one Bolivian were on board. They were brought to shore and transferred to the custody of U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

"These migrant smuggling operations and ventures seek to exploit our maritime border and the short distances between Caribbean nations like the Bahamas and the United States," Cmdr. Luis Rodriguez said in a statement. "It is through our close interagency and allied networks that we are able to interdict, safely embark and send a clear message that those attempting to enter the country illegally by sea will be returned to their country of origin, and this case is no exception."

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