Over 12 tons of cocaine seized, offloaded in South Florida

The United States Coast Guard have offloaded more than 12 tons of cocaine, Thursday, at Port Everglades.

According to the USCG, the 12.4 tons of cocaine has an estimated street value of $378 million. Through 10 missions off the coast of Central and South America and near international waters off the Eastern Pacific Ocean, the Coast Guard was able to retrieve the contraband from suspected smuggling vessels.

The missions took place between mid-October and late November. “These at-sea interdictions are often high-tempo, high-risk evolutions that occur in the dark of night,” said USCG commander Michael Turdo.

The USCG cutter Escanaba, which was used to seize the drugs, holds historical significance. Built in 1932, the Escanaba was assigned to convoy duty during Pearl Harbor.

On Thursday, the 76th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, Turdo asked for a moment of silence. “On June 13, 1943 while on escort patrol, Escanaba was sunk by the enemy, and 101 Coast Guardsmen were lost at sea.”

The USCG said the Escanaba was aided in the drug seizure by three USCG cutters and a Royal Canadian Navy ship.

“Going back to the first Escanaba that we lost in World War II, the tradition lives on,” said Frederick Scott of the USCG. “No matter what the country has faced, we will continue to push through.”

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