SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Air and Marine Operations (AMO) agents seized Monday 1,987 pounds (901.2 kilos) of cocaine from a vessel attempting to reach the coast of Guayama, Puerto Rico. The estimated street value of the contraband is $20.7 million.
“Even as we mourn our fallen colleague, our determination remains steadfast to detect and intercept any attempts to smuggle contraband to our shores,” stated Augusto Reyes, director of air and marine operations in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.
On November 28, the crew of an AMO Multi-Role Enforcement Aircraft (MEA) detected a go-fast vessel with two outboard engines and three persons on board moving north towards the islands southern coast.
The MEA crew-maintained surveillance of the vessel assisting Ponce and Fajardo-based Coastal Interceptor Vessel crews to interdict the suspect vessel 20 nautical miles south of Guayama, Puerto Rico.
The Marine agents found 31 bales of contraband and four males who claimed to be from Venezuela and the Dominican Republic.
The Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) took custody of the contraband and the individuals for investigation and prosecution.
AMO safeguards our Nation by anticipating and confronting security threats through our aviation and maritime law enforcement expertise, innovative capabilities, and partnerships at the border and beyond. With approximately 1,800 federal agents and mission support personnel, 240 aircraft, and 300 marine vessels operating throughout the United States, Puerto Rico, and US Virgin Islands, AMO conducts its mission in the air and maritime environments at and beyond the border, and within the nation’s interior.