Lindsay Brown, Sun Sentinel
August 2, 2011
The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Seneca interdicted a drug smuggling, SPSS vessel in the western Caribbean Sea July 13. A C-130 fixed-wing aircrew spotted a suspicious vessel and notified U.S. Customs and Border Protection maritime patrol airplane to further investigate. The CBP crew spotted the SPSS while on patrol and alerted the Seneca crew of the location. With the assistance of the Customs and Border Patrol airplane, a Seneca-based Coast Guard helicopter crew and pursuit boat crew interdicted the SPSS and detained its crew. The SPSS sank during the interdiction, but not before a quantity of cocaine was recovered. The Seneca crew members commenced searching for the sunken SPSS on July 13. Several Coast Guard Cutters, the Honduran Navy and FBI dive teams conducted multiple search patterns. The SPSS was located by the crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Oak on July 26 using side-sonar equipment.