Mohawk Seizes More Than 3 Tons of Cocaine, Rescues Sea Turtle, Builds Partnerships
KEY WEST, Fla. — The Coast Guard Cutter Mohawk returned to homeport on Jan. 17 following a 53-day Eastern Pacific counter-drug patrol, the Coast Guard said.
The cutter Mohawk crew successfully interdicted five vessels suspected of illegal narcotics smuggling resulting in the detention of 17 suspected smugglers and the seizure of over 3,000 kilograms of cocaine. The crew also helped free a sea turtle trapped in a life buoy, hundreds of miles from shore. They worked alongside an aviation detachment from Helicopter Interdiction Tactical Squadron, and crew members from Coast Guard Tactical Law Enforcement Detachment South.
While on patrol, the cutter conducted the first U.S. military vessel port visit to Corinto, Nicaragua, in more than a decade. The Mohawk crew hosted the chief of naval operations for the Nicaraguan Navy and helped lay the groundwork for future Coast Guard and naval vessel visits to Corinto for logistics and crew rest.
During a port call in Huatulco, Mexico, several crew members assisted local school children sponsored by the U.S. Embassy’s joint initiative with the government of Mexico called “Jovenes En Accion” by working with students and community leaders to plant trees in support of a mangrove restoration project in Salina Cruz. This area was hit hard by a major earthquake in September.
Mohawk’s presence in the Eastern Pacific over the last two months directly supports the security of U.S. borders and the safety of its citizens. Mohawk’s patrol efforts in the region directly impacted international criminal networks by denying them an estimated $100 million worth of profits from interdicted cocaine.
Mohawk is a 270-foot Famous-class cutter named after the Algonquin tribe of the Iroquoian Indians who lived in the Mohawk Valley of New York. Mohawk’s were known for their camaraderie, determination in battle, and ingenuity for overcoming obstacles, traits which the current crew exemplifies daily.