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Cocaine valued at $110M wholesale seized in Caribbean

Posted at 5:38 PM, Apr 16, 2014
and last updated 2014-04-16 17:44:37-04

MIAMI, Fla. (CBS/CNN) — Coast Guard crew members pulled into Miami Beach to offload an estimated 7,341 pounds of cocaine, seized in two separate cases in the Caribbean.

The cocaine is estimated to be worth $110-million, wholesale. The drugs will now be handed over to federal authorities, and destroyed.

“One of the larger busts that the Coast Guard has brought in in recent memory,” Lt. Meaghan Gies with the U.S. Coast Guard, told CBS Miami.

cokebustThe Coast Guard’s first seizure was made when they searched a fishing boat from Panama, though at first nothing was found.

“After the boarding, the fishing vessel actually caught on fire so the Coast Guard detachment vessel pulled off all six crew members,” said Lt. Gies, to CBS Miami.

The rescued crew members were being taken to safety in Jamaica, when millions worth of cocaine were found floating in the water.

“During that transit they then located 97 bales of suspected contraband that was afloat in the water,” said Lt. Gies, to CBS Miami.

Then four days later, Coast Guard crew members intercepted a suspected smuggling go-fast boat from Cartagena, Colombia on its way to the U.S. The Coast Guard helicopter shot out the boat’s engine, reports CBS Miami.

“Helicopter employed warning shots and then disabled the vessel,” said Lt. Gies, to CBS Miami. “They discovered there was over 900 kilograms of suspected contraband.”

The street value of the cocaine is worth triple the amount of the wholesale value, if sold in the streets.