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CBP Miami Air and Marine Branch Effect the Safe Interdiction of Illegal Aliens at Sea

Release Date: 
February 13, 2017

Miami—U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Air and Marine Operations (AMO) Miami Air and Marine Branch DHC-8 aircraft while on routine patrol on February 7, 2017 detected a maritime human smuggling venture 11 nautical miles east, southeast of Government Cut, Miami.  The boat operator would not comply with commands from the Miami Marine Unit to stop.  After a short chase disabling tactics were employed. There was one US legal permanent resident boat operator, and fourteen migrants of various nationalities from China, Sri Lanka, Jamaica, and Ecuador without proper documentation for entry into the United States. 

This event took place on the Florida Straits via a 25’ Dusky cabin cruiser vessel.  This movement of illegal migrants into South Florida came directly from the Bahamas. The interdiction was safely and successfully accomplished by CBP Marine Unit assets and partner agency assistance. The aliens will be deported and the smuggler was arrested and detained by the Miami Marine Unit. 

“This coordinated use of AMO’s air and marine assets is a shining example of our ability to detect and interdict vessels at sea,” said Tony Arevalo, Director of Marine Operations for CBP’s Miami Air and Marine Branch. “We’ll continue to aggressively patrol to prevent illegal maritime activity.”

Safety of life at sea is a top priority. AMO maintains an active and fully engaged cadre of coastal patrol vessels and aircraft aggressively patrolling the Florida coastline to detect and deter illegal and unsafe maritime migration.

“Training, skill and commitment of our agents allows us to safely interdict these migrants attempting to enter the country illegally,” said William Gibbon, Director of the Miami Air and Marine Branch.  “Together with other law enforcement teams we work constantly to keep our nation’s borders secure”.

The mission of Air and Marine Operations is to serve and protect the American people.  AMO applies advanced aeronautical and maritime capabilities and employs a unique skill set to preserve America’s security interest. Community involvement is extremely important to CBP’s mission.  To report maritime smuggling and other suspicious activities call 1-800-BE-ALERT or after hours, toll-free number at 1-800- 562-5943.

Last modified: 
February 14, 2017