21.71 Tons of Cocaine to be Offloaded in Mayport

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Military and Coast Guard officials will offload 43,420 pounds of cocaine from USS Robert G. Bradley (FFG 49) Friday at Naval Station Mayport, Fla., from several Coast Guard and Navy drug seizures in the Pacific Ocean.

The drugs that are scheduled to be offloaded are from seven interdictions made in September, October, November and December 2006. Members of Coast Guard Helicopter Tactical Interdiction Squadron Jacksonville were critical players in the seizure of 8,850-pounds of the cocaine that is scheduled to be offloaded.

The crew of HITRON Jacksonville serves at Ceil Field in Jacksonville and fly training missions over the St. Johns River and off the coast of Jacksonville’s beaches daily.

The seizures are listed in chronological order as follows.

* Crewmembers from the Coast Guard Cutter Boutwell from Alameda, Calif., and HITRON interdicted a “go-fast” vessel approximately 120-miles west of Puerto Quetzal and seized 7,000-pounds of cocaine and four suspected smugglers Sept. 12.

* Crewmembers from the Coast Guard Cutter Boutwell and HITRON interdicted another “go-fast” vessel approximately 460-miles northeast of the Galapagos Islands and seized 1,250 pounds of cocaine and three suspected smugglers Sept. 17.

* Crewmembers from the Coast Guard Cutter Zephyr from Coronado, Calif., interdicted a Guatemalan fishing vessel 100-miles south of Guatemala and seized approximately 20-pounds of cocaine Oct. 2.

* Crewmembers from the Coast Guard Cutter Zephyr interdicted another Guatemalan fishing vessel approximately 118-miles south of Nicaragua and seized 3,500 pounds of cocaine and four suspected smugglers Oct. 13.

* Coast Guard Law Enforcement Detachment 105 boarding team members from San Diego and the USS Thach (FFG-43) from San Diego interdicted a Costa Rican fishing vessel approximately 100-miles south of Cabo Matapalo, Costa Rica and seized 19,500-pounds of cocaine and six suspected smugglers Oct. 20.

* Coast Guard LEDET 105, a Navy HH-60 helicopter with a Coast Guard HITRON gunner aboard and the USS Thach interdicted a “go-fast” approximately 245-miles northeast of the Galapagos Islands and seized 1,100-pounds of cocaine and four suspected smugglers Nov. 6.

* Crewmembers of the Coast Guard Cutter Steadfast from Astoria, Ore., interdicted a semi-submersible vessel approximately 90-miles southwest of Costa Rica and seized 7,000-pounds of cocaine and four suspected smugglers Nov. 16.

* Crewmembers of the Coast Guard Cutter Morgenthau from Alameda recovered 4,600-pounds of cocaine jettisoned from a “go-fast” vessel 250-miles south of El Salvador Dec. 14.

Source: USCG D7 Public Affairs

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