A 30-foot boat crammed with people and cocaine was stopped Thursday on the way to U.S. entry via Puerto Rico, the U.S. Coast Guard said.
Number of people: 38. Amount of coke: 7 kilograms (15.4 pounds).
About 20 miles south of Mona Island, Puerto Rico, the Coast Guard said, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection aircraft spotted the 30-foot boat. By the time the U.S. Coast Guard cutter Winslow Griesser got to the boat, four inches of water sat in the bottom of the boat.
The 35 men and three women all claimed Dominican citizenship. Two of the women were flown to a hospital in Puerto Rico. The rest were handed to the Dominican Republic Navy for repatriation.
The U.S. Coast Guard put the wholesale value of the cocaine at $154,000. Using the Customs and Border Protection San Juan’s usual estimate of $25 per gram, that would be $175,000 on Puerto Rican streets. On Miami streets, using Narcotics News’ $55 per gram minimum, it would be $385,000 of cocaine.