NASSAU, BAHAMAS (CBSMiami) — A major Drug Enforcement Administration operation bagged more than $1.9 million worth of marijuana earlier this month.
On January 16th, Operation Bahamas Turks and Caicos (OPBAT) agents were deployed after a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) aircraft detected a 45 foot go-fast vessel south of the Grand Bahama Island.
The vessel was travelling at high-speed with no lights, and had several barrels onboard.
Once the vessel reached land on a beach located on the West end of the island, agents located the boat and detained eight Bahamian nationals who were hiding nearby.
When agents searched the boat, they discovered approximately 2,100 pounds of marijuana in the storage compartment of the boat. The nationals were taken in for questioning with marijuana trafficking charges pending.
DEA agents transported the marijuana to Nassau for processing and safekeeping.
DEA Special Agent in Charge Mark R. Trouville stated, “In the past year the hard work of the OPBAT agents have resulted in the seizure of more than 38 tons of marijuana and the arrests of at least 80 individuals.”
OPBAT is a DEA- led, cooperative effort with the governments of The Commonwealth of The Bahamas, the Turks and Caicos Islands as well as the Department of State, USCG, and CBP to stop the flow of cocaine and marijuana originating in South American source countries, going through the Bahamas destined for the United States or other places. They also assist with prosecuting human smuggling and search and rescue cases.