Coast Guard cutter returns to Portsmouth after seizing $252 million in cocaine

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PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — The crew of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Northland returned to Portsmouth on Thursday after a drug patrol in the eastern Pacific Ocean.

The crew successfully seized 7,564 kilograms of cocaine during the 81-day mission, worth approximately $252 million, according to the Coast Guard. They also stopped five vessels and detained 16 suspected drug traffickers during the patrol.

The Coast Guard says the crew conducted exercises with the Naval Forces of the Army of Nicaragua and participated in multiple events to help improve diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Nicaragua. They also exchanged information on tactics to help intercept illegal drugs in the region.

A low-profile trafficking vessel floats in the Eastern Pacific Ocean with Coast Guard Cutter Northland in the background. The Northland crew intercepted the vessel and seized cocaine on board. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Lt.j.g. Samuel N. Williams.[/caption]  

While in Nicaragua, the crew planted 1,000 trees in a local national park and traveled to an elementary school to repaint facilities for the students. Northland is a 270-foot ship whose crew executes maritime law enforcement, homeland security and search and rescue missions in support of Coast Guard operations throughout the Western Hemisphere.

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