Florida Keys News - Key West Citizen
Saturday, February 18, 2012
$49 million in cocaine, pot passes through city

The Coast Guard seized nearly $49 million in drugs, mostly cocaine, which it offloaded in Key West Thursday, according to a press release the agency issued Friday.

Two go-fast boat crews jettisoned some of the drugs when the cutter Dallas, which was on patrol in the Caribbean Sea, tried to stop them in December.

The Coast Guard retrieved about 4,000 pounds of cocaine in 77 wrapped packages worth an estimated $48 million and 940 pounds of marijuana in 16 packages worth $852,000.

The 40-foot boat loaded with cocaine was stopped north of Hobbies Cays off Honduras on Dec. 22, and the boat carrying marijuana was stopped southwest of Jamaica on Dec. 31.

Seven suspected smugglers were taken into custody. Four from the cocaine boat were transferred to federal law enforcement officials at Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Three from the marijuana boat were transferred to Jamaican Defense Force officials.

The ship, homeported in Charleston, S.C., is on its last patrol before it is decommissioned in March.

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