USCGC Harriet Lane seizes 8 tons of cocaine in three months in Pacific

US Coast Guard Cutter Harriet Lane has seized approximately 7.8 tons of cocaine during its three-month stint in the Eastern Pacific.

The ship wrapped up its patrols and returned to homeport on April 8.

The drugs were seized from nine suspected drug smuggling vessels and are valued at more than $260 million.

Harriet Lane’s crew worked in conjunction with detachments from the Coast Guard’s Pacific Tactical Law Enforcement Team (PACTACLET) from San Diego, California, and the Coast Guard Helicopter Interdiction Tactical Squadron (HITRON) from Jacksonville, Florida, and other cutters on patrol in the region.

During the course of one week, the crew interdicted three panga style fishing vessels by engaging in high-speed pursuits with the ship’s over the horizon interceptor boat and embarked HITRON helicopter.

“The success of this deployment directly reflects the long hours of training, preparation, and team work of our crew and partner agencies that support this dynamic mission,” said Greg Tozzi, commanding officer of Harriet Lane. “The Coast Guard conducts counter narcotics operations as part of our ongoing effort to disrupt transnational organized crime and reduce the violence directly related to drug trafficking.”

Harriet Lane’s cocaine haul on this patrol marks the largest amount of illegal drugs seized by a single Coast Guard cutter on single patrol in fiscal year 2018. Several of the cocaine shipments seized by Harriet Lane on the latest patrol were among 18 tons of contraband offloaded in San Diego from the Coast Guard cutter Bertholf on March 20, 2018.