Air and Marine Operations P-3 Crew and Partners Seized Over 4,000 Pounds of Cocaine

An Air and Marine Operations (AMO) National Air Security Operations Center, P-3 Long Range Tracker crew and United States Southern Command partners conducted a counter-drug operation in the Eastern Caribbean Sea leading to the apprehension of  people and seizure of 4,189 pounds of cocaine on November 12, denying transnational criminal organizations operating in narcotic and transit zones an estimated $79 million in illicit proceeds.

A National Air Security Operations P-3 Long Range Tracker crew assumed tracking of a suspect go-fast vessel in the Eastern Caribbean Sea and guided in a United States Coast Guard Cutter team. The suspect vessel changed course to evade interdiction. United States Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) partners continued the search and located the vessel’s new position. While monitoring, a SOUTHCOM partner Maritime Patrol Aircraft crew observed several people floating in the sea. A Coast Guard team arrived and detained two people after pulling them from the water. The Coast Guard seized more than two tons of cocaine during this operation.

National Air Security Operations Center P-3 capabilities continue to prove essential in support of United States Southern Command operations, contributing to an increased law enforcement presence in narcotics transit zones. This partnership bolsters support to U.S. and international law enforcement by sharing information and intelligence to help expand target packages.

AMO has two P-3 National Air Security Operations Centers located in Jacksonville, FL and Corpus Christi, TX. These P-3 aircraft operate throughout North, Central and South America in defense of the borders of the United States and to prevent attempts to smuggle persons or contraband.

AMO safeguards our nation by anticipating and confronting security threats through our aviation and maritime law enforcement expertise, innovative capabilities, and partnerships at the border and beyond. With approximately 1,800 federal agents and mission support personnel, 240 aircraft and 300 marine vessels operating throughout the United States, Puerto Rico, and U.S. Virgin Islands, AMO serves as the nation’s experts in airborne and maritime law enforcement.

In Fiscal Year 2020, AMO enforcement actions resulted in the seizure or disruption of 194,220 pounds of cocaine, 278,492 pounds of marijuana, 15,985 pounds of methamphetamine, 952 weapons and $51.5 million as well as 1,066 arrests and 47,872 apprehensions of undocumented migrants.