Cocaine Seizures and Turtle Rescues All a Patrol's Work for Coast Guard Crew
KITTERY, Maine (AP) — A Maine Coast Guard crew seized 12,000 pounds of cocaine and rescued three sea turtles during a patrol through the Caribbean Sea and Pacific Ocean.
The Portland Press Herald reports the cutter Campbell returned to Kittery on Friday after breaking up six smuggling trips and detaining 24 suspects during an 80-day patrol. Officials say the cocaine seized is valued at $209 million.
Crew members also saved three sea turtles that were caught in fishing gear.
Cutter Commander Mark McDonnell said in a statement the crew should be proud of their accomplishments and that integrated agency patrols are vital to preventing cocaine from entering the U.S.
“During this challenging deployment, the crew excelled in all assigned missions and should be exceptionally proud of their accomplishments,” said Cmdr. Mark McDonnell, commanding officer of the Campbell. “Our efforts to integrate with partner agencies and nations are key to the safe and successful execution of these complex interdiction operations as we work together to remove cocaine bound for the United States and help dismantle criminal networks.”
The Campbell is a 29-year-old Famous-Class cutter with a crew of 100.