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CBP Air and Marine Operations Interdicts over $28M worth of Cocaine

Release Date: 
January 22, 2020

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A CBP Air and Marine Operations (AMO) P-3 Orion Long Range Tracker crew assigned to the National Air Security Operations Center-Jacksonville, spotted a suspicious vessel in the Eastern Pacific Ocean loaded with cocaine with an estimated $28 million wholesale value. 

P-3 Orion Long Range Tracker
Air and Marine Operations P-3 Orion Long Range Tracker

The P-3 Orion crew detected the low-profile go-fast vessel in the Eastern Pacific Ocean on Jan. 9.  The crew contacted the U.S. Coast Guard, which intercepted the vessel, described as a 60-foot low-profile go-fast vessel.  Two Colombian nationals and two Ecuadorian nationals were found aboard the vessel, as well as approximately 2,200 lbs. of cocaine.

The National Air Security Operations Center-Jacksonville forms half of the P-3 operations wing, along with its partner center in Corpus Christi, Texas. These P-3 aircraft operate throughout North and South America in defense of the United States borders, by preventing attempts to smuggle persons or contraband. The center is an active partner with FEMA, the U.S. Department of Energy and NORAD in times of national crisis such as Hurricane Harvey or post 9/11.

AMO is a federal law enforcement organization dedicated to serving and protecting the American people through advanced aeronautical and maritime capabilities. AMO interdicts unlawful people and cargo approaching U.S. borders, investigates criminal networks and provides domain awareness in the air and maritime environments, and responds to contingencies and national taskings. With approximately 1,800 federal agents and mission support personnel, 240 aircraft and 300 marine vessels operating throughout the United States, Puerto Rico, and U.S. Virgin Islands, AMO serves as the nation’s experts in airborne and maritime law enforcement.

In Fiscal Year 2019, AMO enforcement actions resulted in the approximate seizure or disruption of 284,825 pounds of cocaine; 101,874 pounds of marijuana; 51,058 pounds of methamphetamine; 935 weapons and $34.1 million. AMO enforcement actions also facilitated 1,575 arrests and 52,036 apprehensions of illegal aliens.

For more information about CBP, visit: CBP.govFlickrDVIDS, or follow us on Twitter at @CBP and @CBP Florida.

Last modified: 
February 3, 2021