US Coast Guard cutter Steadfast seizes US$67 million in cocaine during 57-day counter-narcotics patrol

Photo: US Coast Guard/Petty Officer 1st Class Patrick Kelley

The US Coast Guard medium-endurance cutter Steadfast has returned to its home port of Astoria, Oregon, following a 57-day counter-narcotics patrol in the Eastern Pacific Ocean.

Steadfast travelled more than 16,000 kilometres while conducting law enforcement, search and rescue (SAR), and marine life protection operations.

During their deployment, Steadfast‘s crew boarded five suspected smuggling vessels, seizing 1,771 kilograms of pure cocaine worth an estimated US$67 million and detaining eight suspected drug traffickers.

The crew offloaded the seized contraband in San Diego earlier this week.

Steadfast deployed with an MH-65 helicopter and aircrews and an aviation detachment from the Helicopter Interdiction Tactical Squadron (HITRON) from Jacksonville, Florida. The HITRON unit provided airborne use of force capability, which assisted in the interdiction of four go-fast vessels suspected of illegal narcotics smuggling.

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