PORT EVERGLADES, Fla. – The crew of the U.S. Coast Guard cutter James offloaded about 23,000 pounds of cocaine and about 6,900 pounds of marijuana Tuesday at Port Everglades following seizures in international waters.
The drugs collectively are worth about $408 million.
According to Coast Guard officials, the drugs were seized during 11 interdictions in the eastern Pacific Ocean, off the coasts of Mexico, Central and South America and in the Caribbean Sea.
The interdictions of the drug smuggling vessels were made by four Coast Guard cutters and two U.S. Navy ships.
“Under the leadership of U.S. Southern Command and Joint Inter-agency Task Force South, Coast Guard and Navy forces worked side by side to stop the flow of illegal narcotics on the high seas before it could make landfall in Central America and continue its northward journey into the United States,” said Capt. Jeffrey Randall, commanding officer of the cutter James. “Working alongside our partner agencies, we continue to take the fight to the drug cartels and make an impact on these criminal organizations who spread this poison on our streets. I couldn’t be more proud of my crew and their hard work.”
According to Coast Guard officials, the U.S. Southern Command began enhanced counter-narcotics operations in the Western Hemisphere on April 1.