We report here occasionally about interdictions of illegal immigrants at sea, most recently in our August 2 posting “Boat Carrying Cuban Migrants Interdicted off Key West.” Here are a few more recent events.
On July 31, a 37-foot pleasure craft named Bada Bing was stopped in the waters 30 miles east of Hollywood, Florida. Authorities found three Brazilian migrants, one Jamaican migrant, and two suspected smugglers on board. (Miami Herald, August 7)
On Thursday, August 1, a 27-foot cabin cruiser off the coast of Miami Beach was boarded by Coast Guard and Border Patrol officials, who took into custody seven migrants and one suspected smuggler. They also confiscated 67 packages of marijuana. The migrants consisted of five Jamaicans, one Bahamian, and one Italian. The smuggler was a suspected Bahamian. (WPLG, August 2)
On Monday, August 5, the Coast Guard interdicted six migrants seven miles east of Boca Raton, after receiving a tip about a suspicious 15-foot, homemade, wooden boat in the area. The migrants were returned to Cuba and turned over to authorities there. (WPTV, August 8)
Petty Officer Nicolaus Rodriguez of the Coast Guard was quoted after the Bada Bing interdiction:
“Attempting to smuggle yourself into the country via the maritime environment is both extremely dangerous and illegal . With the consistent danger these smuggling ventures present, our crews and partner agencies remain persistently vigilant to protect lives and enforce federal laws.”
These interdictions at sea are not given a lot of attention by the usual news outlets. They typically involve much smaller numbers than land incursions along our southern border, but they represent significant effort and expense on the part of the Coast Guard and its allied agencies.