BOSTON — The Coast Guard Cutter Campbell returned to its homeport at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Kittery, Maine, Sunday, following a 61-day counter narcotics patrol of the Caribbean Sea and Eastern Pacific Ocean.
In the span of one month Campbell seized or disrupted a total of seven smuggling vessels carrying cocaine from South America bound for the United States. The amount of cocaine seized was estimated to be 4,800 pounds and worth more than $80 million dollars.
In addition, Campbell’s crew rescued eight Cuban migrants attempting to sail from Cuba to the United States in an unseaworthy vessel.
Campbell deployed in support of the Joint-Interagency Task Force-South, which is in an international operation to disrupt the transportation of narcotics. In doing so, Campbell worked with air, land, and naval assets from the U.S. Department of Defense and the Department of Homeland Security, as well as Western Hemisphere partner agencies, to counter drug trafficking.
“The amount of success we experienced is a true testament to the professionalism of the crew and their dedication to the mission,” said Cmdr. Michael Nasitka, Campbell’s Commanding Officer. “The patrol was extremely busy and the crew spent the holidays away from their families. Despite this, the crew rose to every challenge in order to achieve success at thwarting transnational crime in the Western Hemisphere.”
Campbell is 270-foot medium endurance cutter, and is the sixth cutter to bear the name Campbell. The new Offshore Patrol Cutter contract has been awarded and will feature state-of-the- market technology and will replace the service’s 270-foot and 210-foot medium endurance cutters, which are becoming increasingly expensive to maintain and operate.