Coast Guard Repatirates 46 Dominicans, Detains 5 Migrants

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Dauntless repatriated 46 Dominican migrants to La Romana, Dominican Republic, at approximately 11:40 a.m. today, following two at-sea interdictions of Dominican migrants Monday and Tuesday.

Five migrants were identified through the use of biometrics, digital fingerprints and photographs, three of them, as having been previously deported, convicted or arrested on drug related charges. The remaining two migrants were identified for attempting to enter illegally into U.S. territory for the fourth and fifth time.

The crew of the Dauntless turned over custody of all five Dominican migrants to U.S. Border Patrol agents in Mayaguez yesterday, for further processing in anticipation of filing of charges by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Puerto Rico.

The Dauntless interdicted a 15-foot go-fast, at 12:20 a.m. Tuesday with two illegal Dominican migrants, approximately 10 nautical miles southwest of Desecheo Island, Puerto Rico. Dauntless crewmembers transferred the two migrants aboard the cutter.

The second group of 49 migrants was interdicted at 10 p.m. Monday, by the crew of a Customs and Border Protection marine unit, approximately two nautical miles west of Boqueron, Puerto Rico. The migrants were traveling illegally to Puerto Rico aboard a 30-foot-green yola. The Chincoteague arrived on scene and the crew safely transferred the migrants aboard the yola to the cutter. The Chincoteague later rendezvoused with and transferred all 49 migrants to the Dauntless Tuesday.

The biometric capability employed in this case provides the Coast Guard with an important tool to definitively establish the identity of those interdicted at sea who may attempt to enter or re-enter the United States illegally, or who may pose a threat to national security.

Collecting biometric identification supports the U.S. Government’s efforts to target human smugglers and protect migrants put at risk attempting to enter the United States illegally from the sea.

Coast Guard Cutter Chincoteague is a 110-foot patrol boat homeported in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Coast Guard Cutter Dauntless is a 210-foot medium endurance cutter homeported in Galveston, Tx.

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