PORT ANGELES — The crew of the Coast Guard cutter Active has returned to its homeport of Port Angeles after a 10-week, 13,000-mile counter-narcotics deployment in the Pacific Ocean off the coasts of Central and South America.
The Active returned to the Port Angeles Coast Guard station Tuesday.
The Active’s 75-member crew conducted law enforcement boardings in the Eastern Pacific, including two interdictions involving cocaine seizures, disrupting the delivery of nearly 2 tons of illicit drugs worth more than $40 million, the Coast Guard said.
The interdictions stemmed from Active’s participation in Operation Martillo, a Joint Interagency Task Force operation aimed at deterring illegal smuggling.
“Our entire crew becomes fully energized by these opportunities to deter harmful drugs from reaching the United States,” said Cmdr. Benjamin Berg, commanding officer of the cutter Active.
‘A significant hurt’
“Stopping the flow near the source also puts a significant hurt on the criminal organizations that rely on these proceeds to fund further violent and destructive criminal activities.
“I am so proud of this crew and their successful operations during this deployment.”
During the deployment, the Active stopped in California to represent the Coast Guard at Los Angeles’ inaugural Fleet Week activities. Active’s crew participated in several community relations events, including providing public tours of the ship.
The Coast Guard and its interagency partners removed more than 416,600 pounds of cocaine worth more than $5.6 billion in fiscal year 2016, from Oct. 1, 2015, to Sept. 30, 2016.
The service’s previous record was 367,700 pounds of cocaine removed in fiscal year 2008.