Right after midnight on Friday, a CBP maritime surveillance aircraft on patrol detected a 30’ “yola” type vessel with two outboard engines, center console and three people on board, traveling on a northwest course without navigation lights.
The vessel was kept under constant surveillance by the CBP aircraft, observing that the vessel stopped in French Cap Cay, where two of the three individuals on board jumped in the water and swam toward the island.
They appeared to be carrying packages to shore. After they finished stashing the packages, they left the island and headed east towards the south of St John island.
A CBP marine interceptor unit from the St Thomas Marine and a CBP helicopter collaborated to intercept the vessel. The three individuals on board were detained inside the vessel, approximately 6 miles south of St Thomas.
US Coast Guard and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) arrived at the scene, retrieving 10 bales filled with a powdery substance, which later tested positive for cocaine. The drugs weighed 321.8 kilos, with an estimated street value of $8,045,000.
ICE Homeland Security Investigations assumed custody of the narcotics and arrested the three individuals on board the vessel