SAN DIEGO — More than 5,776 pounds of narcotics were offloaded Friday by the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Alert (WMEC 630) crew, officials announced.
The interception, which occurred in May, took place in international waters in the Eastern Pacific Ocean off the coasts of Central and South America, USCG explained.
“Preventing these drugs from reaching our country not only saves lives, but reduces violence, corruption and instability,” said Rear Adm. Andrew Sugimoto, Commander of the Coast Guard Eleventh District. “I commend the Alert’s crew for their hard work and continued efforts to ensure the illegal and dangerous process of bringing drugs into this country is put to a stop.”
USCG did not say who was transporting the drugs or where they are believed to come from. This information has yet to be released.
“Alert’s crew and attached aviation detachment overcame numerous challenges to flawlessly execute our assigned counternarcotics patrol,” said Cmdr. Matthew Kolodica, Commanding Officer of the Alert. “I am extremely impressed with the crew’s resiliency and unwavering dedication to safe, efficient, mission execution. Stopping $76 million worth of narcotics from reaching American soil is something we can all be proud of, and I’m truly honored to lead such a fine team.”
The Alert is a USCG 210-foot medium endurance cutter and officials say missions take the Alert throughout the Pacific Ocean. This includes the maritime boundary line between Russia and the U.S as well as the coastal waters off Washington, Oregon and California to the waters off the Central and South American coasts, officials explained.