Coast Guard seizes $48-million worth of cocaine in Western Carribbean

Coast Guard Cutter Thetis

Cutter Thetis file photo

MIAMI — The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Thetis intercepted a go-fast boat 160 nautical miles off the coast of Colon, Panama, Dec. 17, 2010.

The intercepted boat was carrying 62 bales of cocaine weighing 3,400 pounds and worth an estimated wholesale value of $48 million.

The cutter Thetis launched a smallboat crew and was assisted by aircraft from the Coast Guard and Customs and Border Protection Agency, Air and Marine Branch, to stop the go-fast vessel.

Bales were found and retrieved aboard the smuggling boat by Coast Guard boarding team members.

Crewmembers of the Key West-based Cutter Thetis offloaded the 62 bales of cocaine at the Coast Guard base in Miami Beach Wednesday followed by remarks from the Thetis commanding officer, Cmdr. Douglas Schofield, regarding the seizure.

“We are ready to stop all contraband on the high seas with our partners, not only in the U.S., but those international agencies that work with us day to day,” said Schofield, of the U.S. Coast Guard.

The three suspected smugglers were transferred to authorities in Miami Wednesday.

This marks the second seizure from the Coast Guard Cutter Thetis this month.

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