The Coast Guard Cutter Richard Dixon repatriated 90 Dominicans to the Dominican Republic Sunday afternoon, following the interdiction of three illegal voyages near Puerto Rico.
The interdictions are the result of ongoing local and federal multi-agency efforts in support of the Caribbean Border Interagency Group CBIG.
“These successful interdictions were possible thanks to excellent coordination and collaboration between the Coast Guard and our local and federal partners within the Caribbean Border Interagency Group, together, we stand ready and respond daily to protect our nation’s maritime border from illegal voyages and other existing threats,” said Cmdr. Beau Powers, Sector San Juan chief of response. “To anyone thinking of taking part in an illegal voyage, we urge you not to take to the sea! Your life and the life of everyone else taking part in the voyage will be in great danger. The sea-state conditions of the Mona Passage are dangerous and quite unpredictable, especially for these grossly overloaded makeshift vessels that most often are unseaworthy and have no lifesaving equipment onboard.”
The Coast Guard Cutter Winslow Griesser interdicted the first illegal voyage Thursday morning, after the aircrew of a Customs and Border Protection Marine Enforcement Aircraft detected a 30-foot makeshift vessel, approximately 25 nautical miles northwest of Aguadilla, Puerto Rico.
The cutter Winslow Griesser interdicted a second illegal voyage Friday morning, after the aircrew of a Customs and Border Protection Marine Enforcement Aircraft detected a 24-foot makeshift vessel, approximately 24 nautical miles north of Aguadilla, Puerto Rico.
The Coast Guard Cutter Richard Dixon interdicted the third illegal voyage Saturday afternoon, after the aircrew of a Customs and Border Protection Marine Enforcement Aircraft detected a 26-foot makeshift vessel, approximately 45 nautical miles north of Aguadilla, Puerto Rico.
Once aboard a Coast Guard cutter, persons who are interdicted receive food, water, shelter and basic medical attention. Throughout the interdictions, Coast Guard crewmembers were equipped with personal protective equipment to minimize potential exposure to any possible case of COVID-19.
The cutter Richard Dixon completed the repatriation process during a rendezvous with a Dominican Republic Navy vessel near Punta Cana, Dominican Republic.