USS Shamal Interdicts Drugs From Go-Fast Vessel

The Cyclone-class patrol ship USS Shamal with embarked U.S. Coast Guard LEDET team conducts enhanced counter narcotics operations on July 4. U.S. COAST GUARD

CARIBBEAN SEA — The Cyclone-class patrol ship USS Shamal with an embarked U.S. Coast Guard law enforcement detachment (LEDET) recovered more than 3,900 pounds of suspected marijuana on July 4, U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command/U.S. 4th Fleet public affairs said in a July 27 release.

While on routine patrol in the Caribbean Sea, Shamal spotted the go-fast vessel. Once detected, the crew observed suspected drug smugglers aboard jettisoning packages overboard.

In a coordinated effort, Shamal launched their small boat and the LEDET was deployed to the scene to further investigate.

Upon arriving on scene, the Shamal and the embarked LEDET recovered a total of 708 bales of suspected marijuana, totaling more than 3,940 pounds worth over an estimated wholesale value of $6.9 million.

“The Shamal team performed very well during the interdiction and safely boarded the vessel,” said Shamal’s commanding officer, Lt. Cmdr. Daniel O’Neill. “We received outstanding training in preparation for this patrol, and it really motivates the Shamal team when we’re able to demonstrate our abilities with a successful bust.”

USS Shamal is deployed to the U.S. 4th Fleet area of operations supporting U.S. Southern Command’s enhanced counter drug operations mission in the Caribbean.