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  4. Air and Marine Operations and Partners Make Large Drug Bust off Coast of Santa Barbara

Air and Marine Operations and Partners Make Large Drug Bust off Coast of Santa Barbara

Release Date
Wed, 08/19/2020

SAN DIEGO — The San Diego Air and Marine Branch (SDAMB), in collaboration with U.S. Border Patrol (USBP) agents, Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Office (SBSO), Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), and other partners, interdicted a ‘super panga’ off the coast of Southern California Tuesday, seizing thousands of pounds of suspected methamphetamine and making multiple arrests.

In the early morning hours of August 19, SDAMB Multi-role Enforcement Aircraft crew detected a multi-engine panga with four subjects on board, and relayed the information to USBP agents on the ground, who coordinated the apprehension of suspects involved and seizure of assets. The investigation and prosecution of the subjects is continuing.

“The citizens of this country can rest assured that CBP is ever vigilant in their duty to protect the American people and stand ready to combat those criminals that would deliver this poison to our streets, saving American lives,” said Timothy Sutherland, Director San Diego Air and Marine Branch.

The SDAMB has already made a big impact in the illicit drugs entering via California this fiscal year. In FY20 year to date through July 31, SDAMB has contributed to the seizure of 480 lbs. of cocaine, 199,307 lbs. of marijuana, 191 lbs. fentanyl, 114 lbs. of heroin, and 2,948 lbs. of methamphetamine. SDAMB seized, 80 weapons, 81 vehicles/vessels, and contributed to the apprehension of 2,618 individuals.

Please visit to view additional news releases and other information pertaining to Customs and Border Protection. Follow us on Twitter at @CBPAMO, @CBPAMORegDirSW.

Last Modified: Feb 03, 2021