New USCG cutter makes another cocaine seizure

Photo: US Coast Guard

Crews aboard the pre-commissioned US Coast Guard Cutter Midgett (WMSL 757) have seized more than 4,600 pounds of cocaine from a low-profile go-fast vessel in international waters of the Eastern Pacific Ocean.

The cocaine was discovered after the coast guard boarded the vessel on July 31.

This was the second at-sea cocaine seizure made by Midgett’s crew within five days.

Midgett’s crew seized more than 2,100 pounds of cocaine July 25 from a low-profile go-fast boat, the national security cutter’s first cocaine seizure ever since departing the Pascagoula, Mississippi, shipyard in June following acceptance by the US Coast Guard.

The two boardings resulted in a combined seizure of over 6,700 pounds of cocaine, estimated to be worth over $89 million.

Low-profile go-fast vessels are purpose built by cartels for smuggling large quantities of contraband by riding low in the water to avoid detection. By design, they can be quickly sunk through the use of integrated scuttling valves, a dangerous practice that jeopardizes the safety of the suspected smugglers and the coast guard boarding teams.

Midgett, the Coast Guard’s eighth national security cutter, is sailing toward its future homeport in Honolulu, where it will be commissioned August 24 along with its sister ship, the Coast Guard Cutter Kimball (WMSL 756).

Featuring advanced command-and-control capabilities, national security cutters are the flagship of the coast guard’s fleet, deploying globally to confront national security threats, strengthen maritime governance, and promote economic prosperity.

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