SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Joseph Doyle (WPC-1133) repatriated 46 migrants on Sept. 10 to a Dominican Republic navy vessel just off Samaná following the interdiction of two illegal migrant voyages in the Mona Passage, the Coast Guard 7th District said in a release.
Four of the interdicted migrants — three men and a woman — remain in Puerto Rico to face possible federal prosecution on charges of attempted illegal re-entry into the United States.
The interdictions resulted from ongoing efforts in support of Operation Unified Resolve, Operation Caribbean Guard and the Caribbean Border Interagency Group.
While on a routine patrol of the Mona Passage on Sept. 8, the crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Heriberto Hernandez (WPC-1114) detected and interdicted a 22-foot makeshift boat with 22 migrants aboard about eight nautical miles northwest of Aguadilla, Puerto Rico. The Heriberto Hernandez’s crew safely embarked 14 men and eight women who claimed to be Dominicans.
A Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Air and Marine Operations DHC-8 marine patrol aircraft crew sighted a second migrant boat on Sept. 8 about 56 nautical miles northwest of Aguadilla, Puerto Rico. The Heriberto Hernandez diverted to the scene and interdicted a 16-foot boat with 28 migrants aboard. The cutter’s crew safely embarked 26 men and two women, all of whom also claimed to be Dominican.
The Heriberto Hernandez later rendezvoused with the cutter Joseph Doyle and transferred the 46 migrants for their repatriation. The Heriberto Hernandez also rendezvoused with Ramey Sector Border Patrol agents in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico, who received custody of the four migrants awaiting prosecution.