Coast Guard seizes $48 million worth of cocaine
MIAMI BEACH, Fla. (WSVN) -- Crews off-loaded more than $48 million worth of cocaine seized at sea.
Coast Guard officials brought the cocaine to Miami Beach Coast Guard Base on the Coast Guard Cutter Valiant at around noon Friday. The drugs will then ne taken to a secret location where it will be destroyed.
The Valiant had been deployed to the Caribbean to work a 40-day mission. According to officials, there were three interdictions that took place beginning back on May 31.
On June 10, the Coast Guard unit, working with the Nicaraguan government took in about 1,000 pounds of cocaine, officials revealed. They jumped aboard a Nicaraguan ship in the middle of the night and seized all that cocaine. They also detained five people on board. They will be prosecuted by the US government.
The Valiant's crew also took in 2,600 pounds when they stopped a 35-foot go-fast boat with the help of a Coast Guard helicopter.
Back on June 15, another 220 pounds was seized off of a US-flagged sailboat, found about 900 miles south of Jamaica. That 44-foot sailing vessel was towed into the port and is expected to be sold at auction.
This marks the final mission for USCG Capt. John Dettleff, the commander of the Valiant. He said he is extremely proud of the job done by this ship and her crew. "To be able to actually interdict this many drugs and get them all before they sink or they flee is a pretty good-sized bust," he said. "When it hits the streets, that dollar value goes even higher."
Dettleff's family was there to welcome him home. "It's tough walking away from command," he said.
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