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Gettysburg Seizes Narcotics During Western Caribbean Operations

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS060125-01
Release Date: 1/24/2006 8:00:00 PM

From Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command Public Affairs

USS GETTYSBURG, At sea (NNS) -- While on patrol in the western Caribbean Sea, USS Gettysburg (CG 64), with its embarked U.S. Coast Guard Law Enforcement Detachment, completed a major drug interdiction in January.

Assigned under the operational control of U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command, Gettysburg is deployed as part of a Joint Inter-Agency Task Force conducting counter-narcoterrorism operations in the Western hemisphere.

The operation resulted in the seizure of approximately 1.5 tons of cocaine and eight suspected drug traffickers. After boarding and thoroughly searching the vessel, Gettysburg discovered and seized 50 bales of narcotics. Following the seizure, the narcotics and suspected drug traffickers were transferred to the U.S. Coast Guard cutter USCGC Tornado (WPC 14) for further disposition to U.S. authorities. Gettysburg then placed a custody crew on board the seized merchant vessel and escorted it to Panamanian waters, where custody of the ship was transferred to the Panamanian National Maritime Service.

Gettysburg is a Ticonderoga-class cruiser home ported in Mayport, Fla., and currently has an embarked helicopter from Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron (Light) (HSL) 46, Detachment 5, also from Mayport, and a U.S. Coast Guard Law Enforcement Detachment aboard.

This seizure is Gettysburg’s fourth drug seizure on its current deployment.

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