$236 million in seized drugs offloaded in Fort Lauderdale

U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Vigilant crewmembers wrap a pallet of illegal narcotics at Port Everglades on Dec. 15, 2021. The Vigilant is homeported in Port Canaveral, Florida. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Ryan Estrada)

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Vigilant has certainly been living up to its name.

It docked at Fort Lauderdale’s Port Everglades on Wednesday to offload illegal narcotics worth an estimated $236 million.

The Coast Guard says the Vigilant had been on a 45-day patrol in international waters off the coasts of Mexico, Central and South America that netted nearly 12,000 pounds of cocaine and more than 5,000 pounds of marijuana with the help of other crews.

“The successful interdiction of over 17,000 pounds of illegal narcotics and the apprehension of 17 suspected traffickers are the result of tremendous teamwork,” Cmdr. Jay Guyer, commanding officer of the Vigilant, said in a statement. “We are thankful for coordinated efforts across the U.S. Coast Guard, the Department of Defense, Customs and Border Protection, as well as our international partners from Canada and throughout Central and South America.”

The 210-foot, 67-year-old Vigilant was set to return to its homeport, Port Canaveral in Central Florida.