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Coast Guard crew intercepts submarine carrying $165 million worth of cocaine in Jacksonville

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Posted at 12:46 PM, Sep 24, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-24 14:07:52-04

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (WTXL) — The Coast Guard Cutter Valiant crew has intercepted a drug-laden, 40-foot self-propelled semi-submersible (SPSS) in the Eastern Pacific.

While on routine patrol in the Eastern Pacific on Tuesday, Valiant’s crew intercepted a self-propelled semi-submersible in international waters carrying approximately 12,000 pounds of cocaine, worth over $165 million.

They also arrested four suspected drug smugglers.

About 1,100 pounds of the cocaine has been offloaded, but due to safety concerns, the remainder was not.

"There are no words to describe the feeling Valiant crew is experiencing right now,” said Cmdr. Matthew Waldron, Valiant’s Commanding Officer. “In a 24-hour period, the crew both crossed the equator and intercepted a drug-laden self-propelled semi-submersible vessel."

The Valiant is a multi-mission 210-foot Medium-Endurance Cutter commissioned in 1967. Missions include search and rescue, maritime law enforcement, marine environmental protection, homeland security, and national defense operations.