Virginia Beach-based Coast Guard Cutter seizes over 8,000 pounds of cocaine

Posted at 5:51 PM, May 04, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-04 17:51:39-04

PACIFIC OCEAN -04.08.2017
(Photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Joshua Canup)

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – The crew of the Cutter Dependable returned home Thursday after a two-month patrol in the Eastern Pacific Ocean.

The Coast Guard said during the patrol the crew seized over 8,000 pounds of cocaine with an estimated value of $122 million.

The evidence gathered will be used to prosecute 19 suspected smugglers.

In four separate cases, the crew of Dependable pursued five vessels suspected of smuggling narcotics; including several high speed pursuits of go-fast vessels specially fitted to smuggle contraband. 

The Virginia Beach-based Dependable is a 210-foot Reliance class medium endurance cutter with a crew complement of 75. 

They conduct homeland security missions in the offshore waters of the Western Hemisphere from New England to the Caribbean Sea and Eastern Pacific, the Coast Guard said.

Nearing its 50th year serving America, Dependable and the other 26 aging medium endurance Coast Guard cutters are scheduled to be replaced by new Offshore Patrol Cutters in 2021.