MIAMI – Early Tuesday morning, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Air and Marine Operations (AMO) agents successfully resuscitated an unresponsive individual who had entered the ocean from a vessel near Sunny Isles Beach, Florida.
AMO agents had been on overnight maritime patrol and encountered a vessel operating without navigational lights that was headed toward the beach. The vessel appeared to have multiple persons on board. As AMO agents attempted to stop the vessel, it turned away and the individuals onboard entered the water in an apparent attempt to flee.
“This event spotlights both the danger of these kind of voyages, and the dedication of AMO agents and staff”, said AMO Southeast Region Executive Director John Priddy. “This event further demonstrates the value of integrated teamwork with our Federal and local partners.”
AMO agents quickly worked to assist all, and successfully rescued eleven suspected migrants. The migrant vessel capsized, and one person became entangled underneath it, requiring an AMO agent to enter the water to assist. After freeing the subject and pulling him onboard, AMO agents found him to be unresponsive. CPR was immediately administered, and after approximately 15 minutes, the victim was resuscitated.
Shortly thereafter, a Miami-Dade Fire Rescue boat arrived and transported the subject to be airlifted for further medical treatment and observation at a local hospital.
AMO turned over eleven migrants to U.S. Coast Guard Station Miami for repatriation. Three migrants successfully swam to shore and were subsequently apprehended by U.S. Border Patrol Agents.
DHS partner agencies are actively investigating the case.