Coast Guard Intercepts, Repatriates 94 Cubans

MIAMI – Eighty-one Cuban migrants interdicted in five events were repatriated by the crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Chandeleur to Bahia de Cabanas, Cuba, Thursday, and 13 Cuban migrants interdicted July 23 were repatriated Wednesday by the crew of Coast Guard Cutter Kodiak Island.

Coast Guard Cutter Knight Island stopped a go-fast vessel with 24 Cuban migrants and two suspected smugglers aboard, 65 miles south of Dry Tortugas, Fla., July 23. The two suspected smugglers were transferred to Customs and Border Protection officials in Key West, Fla. Nine migrants, including one minor child, were transferred to CBP in Key West. The adult migrants were brought ashore to further a criminal investigation. Thirteen remaining migrants were repatriated Wednesday, and one was transferred to Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami for medical treatment.

The crew of the Cutter Dolphin located a rustic vessel with 14 migrants on board, 10 miles west of South Bimini, Bahamas, July 24, and brought them aboard without incident. Six migrants were repatriated and eight migrants will be transferred to Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

The aircrew of an HH-65 Dolphin helicopter from Coast Guard Air Station Miami located a rustic vessel with nine people aboard, 35 miles southeast of Marathon, Fla., July 26. Crews from the Cutter Diligence safely embarked all nine Cuban migrants without incident.

The Coast Guard received a report that a Good Samaritan located a rustic vessel with seven people aboard 25 miles southwest of Long Key, Fla., Friday. Crews from Station Marathon arrived on scene and safely transferred the Cuban migrants to the Cutter Diligence.

The crew of a 33-foot Special Purpose Craft from Coast Guard Station Marathon interdicted a go-fast carrying 39 migrants and two suspected smugglers 20 miles south of Big Pine Key, Fla., Friday. The two suspected smugglers were transferred to CBP officials in Key West. One of the 39 migrants will be transferred to ICE officials in Guantanamo Bay.

The Coast Guard received a report Sunday that a Good Samaritan located a home made vessel with 21 people aboard 16 miles south of Key West. An HH-65 Dolphin from Miami was launched and located the vessel. Migrants were initially non-compliant but were later brought aboard without further incident after an entangling device was used to foul the vessel’s propeller. Crews from Station Key West embarked 21 Cuban migrants and later transferred them to the Cutter Elm. One female migrant was transported to Lower Keys Memorial Hospital for additional medical attention.

In addition, Coast Guard crews successfully disrupted three attempted smuggling operations during the past week. The five men apprehended were transferred to CBP officials and may face criminal charges.

“Unfortunately we are seeing an increase in the number of people needlessly endangering their lives and the lives of others in attempts to illegally enter the United States from the sea,” said Lt. Cmdr. Chris O’Neil, public affairs officer for the Seventh Coast Guard District. “This increase was not unexpected as we have historically seen increases in activity during hurricane season, and we have planned accordingly and deployed our assets where they can be most effective. We continue to work with our Department of Homeland Security partners and our state and local law enforcement partners, to secure our borders, bring to justice those people who break the law and save lives at sea.”

Once aboard Coast Guard cutters, all migrants receive food, water and any necessary medical attention.

The Chandeleur is a 110-foot patrol boat homeported in Miami.

The Knight Island is a 110-foot patrol boat homeported in St. Petersburg, Fla.

The Dolphin is an 87-foot patrol boat homeported in Miami.

The Elm is a 225-foot sea-going buoy tender homeported in Atlantic Beach, N.C.

The Diligence is a 210-foot medium-endurance cutter homeported in Wilmington, N.C.

###

Related Posts

Comments are closed.