Coast Guard Cutter Active returns from deployment Sunday

Coast Guard Cutter ActivePORT ANGELES, Wash. — A local Coast Guard crew is scheduled to return to Port Angeles Sunday afternoon after they seized more than $17 million worth of illegal narcotics during an 88-day deployment.

The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Active was deployed to the Eastern Pacific Ocean off the coast of Central America in support of Joint Interagency Task Force South. During the deployment, Active’s crew responded to search and rescue calls, detained a number of suspicious vessels and suspects and seized over 1,177 pounds of of cocaine from suspected smugglers.

“While we were deployed for the drug interdiction mission, this was a typical multi-mission patrol for us. The crew saved lives, successfully interdicted illegal narcotics likely bound for the United States, disrupted transnational organized crime networks and last week, capped off the deployment with a successful recertification of our shipboard helicopter operations capability,” said Cmdr. Phillip Crigler, commanding officer of Cutter Active. “The crew worked extremely hard for three months. After conducting helicopter and boat evolutions day and night, we are all ready to be back home.”

Crew members took time from the busy patrol to volunteer at a local grade school in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, where they performed maintenance, renovations and visited with a few of the students. This volunteer effort helped improve the quality of education and life for the students in the region.

Active’s crew routinely operates from Central America to the coast of Washington conducting fisheries, search and rescue, counter-narcotics and other Coast Guard missions.

U.S. maritime law enforcement and the interdiction phase of counter-smuggling operations in the Eastern Pacific occurs under the tactical control of the 11th Coast Guard District in Alameda. The Eleventh Coast Guard District encompasses the states of California, Arizona, Nevada, and Utah, the coastal and offshore waters out over thousand miles and the offshore waters of Mexico and Central America down to South America.

Joint Interagency Task Force South, a National Task Force under U.S. Southern Command, oversees the detection and monitoring of illicit traffickers and assists U.S. and multi-national law enforcement agencies with the interdiction of these illicit traffickers. During at-sea busts in international waters, these interdictions are led and conducted by U.S. Coast Guard personnel or partner nation law enforcement agencies.

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