Coast Guard makes dramatic drug seizure, raiding submarine

Crime

This June 6, 2019 photo provided by the U.S. Coast Guard shows U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Munro (WMSL 755) crew members transfer bales of cocaine from the ship’s 35-foot Long Range Interceptor small boat to the cutter. The cocaine was seized following an interdiction of a suspected drug smuggling boat in international waters of the Eastern Pacific Ocean. (Petty Officer 1st Class Matthew Masaschi/U.S. Coast Guard via AP)

CORONADO, Calif. (AP) — Members of the U.S. Coast Guard boarded a semi-submarine racing through the waves, one of 14 operations seizing cocaine and marijuana since May in international waters off Mexico and Central and South America.

Dramatic video was released by the agency showing the encounter with smugglers on Thursday.

It shows a Coast Guard vessel pulling alongside the submarine as someone yells orders in Spanish for it to stop. The submarine continues to move as Coast Guard members then get close enough to board it as one repeatedly pounds on the hatch before it opens and people on board appear with their hands raised as they surrender.

Cocaine and marijuana, with an estimated street value of $569 million, was seized during the operations over the past two months, the Coast Guard said.

Vice President Mike Pence was on hand Thursday as 39,000 pounds (17,690 kilograms) of cocaine and 933 pounds (423 kilograms) of marijuana were taken off the cutter Munro at Naval Air Station North Island in Coronado.

Fifty-five smuggling suspects were taken into custody.

Photos also were released of the Coast Guard sinking drug boats.

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