Coast Guard Cutter Forward to return home after 45-day counter-drug patrol

Mid Atlantic Coast Guard News
PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The Coast Guard Cutter Forward and crew are scheduled to return to homeport Monday following a 45-day patrol in the Caribbean Sea in support of Operation Martillo.

During the deployment, the Forward’s crew coordinated with other counter-drug agencies such as the Air Force, Navy, Drug Enforcement Agency, Customs and Border Protection and Joint Interagency Task Force South to intercept and interdict illegal activities and stop the flow of narcotics.

The law enforcement crews of the Forward teamed with the crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Confidence and an embarked aviation detachment from the Helicopter Interdiction Tactical Squadron to counter two illicit trafficking interdictions leading to the seizure of more than $50 million in narcotics.

“The ship-helicopter team is a winning combination that enables us to make important contributions to regional and homeland security,” said Cmdr. Greg Wisener, the Forward’s commanding officer. “Interdiction at sea is a highly-efficient and cost-effective way to counter transnational criminal organizations.”

Operation Martillo is a U.S., European and Western Hemisphere partner nation effort launched in January 2012, targeting illicit trafficking routes in coastal waters along the Central American isthmus. Operation Martillo directly supports a key objective of Central America Regional Security Initiative – the disruption of illicit drug trafficking and the dismantlement of transnational criminal networks in Central America.

The Forward is a 270-foot medium-endurance cutter homeported in Portsmouth with a crew of approximately 110 members.

The cutter is scheduled to arrive at Base Portsmouth at approximately 9:30 a.m.

PORTSMOUTH, Va. - The crew aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Forward, a multi-mission 270-foot medium-endurance cutter, prepares to moor at the Base Support Unit Portsmouth pier Sept. 11, 2011.  The crew aboard the Forward returned after an 111-day deployment to western Africa in support of the African Maritime Law Enforcement Partnership mission. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Walter Shinn.

In thtis file photo, the Coast Guard Cutter Forward returns to Portsmouth – U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Walter Shinn

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