FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – The DEA, Department of Defense, and Department of Homeland Security, and U.S. Coast Guard announced today a significant offload of drugs seized in international waters in the Eastern Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea. Agents with the DEA and the crew of the USCG Cutter James offloaded more than 33,000 pounds of cocaine and marijuana – worth an estimated $438.5 million – at Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale.
DEA Acting Administrator Timothy J. Shea, along with Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf; Admiral Karl Schultz, Commandant of the Coast Guard; Admiral Craig Faller, Commander U.S. Southern Command; and Captain Jeffrey Randal, Commanding Officer of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter James, made the announcement during a press conference at the offload site.
“Today we witness another blow to drug trafficking organizations attempting to smuggle their poisons into our country,” said Acting Administrator Shea. “This offload represents hundreds of millions of dollars in profits that would otherwise go to fueling these organizations and continuing the deadly cycle of drug addiction and violence they promote. DEA, together with our partners, is committed to bringing narco-traffickers to justice, and to dismantling their organizations across the nation and around the world.”
Numerous U.S. agencies from the Departments of Justice, Defense, and Homeland Security cooperate in the effort to combat transnational organized crime. The DEA, FBI, USCG, Navy, CBP, and Immigration and Customs Enforcement, along with allied and international partner agencies, play an important role in counter-drug operations. Maritime efforts to combat drug cartels requires unity of effort in all phases from detection, monitoring, and interdictions, to criminal prosecutions by U.S. Attorney’s Offices in districts across the nation.