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Old 11-02-2022, 12:03 PM
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Arrow Navy seizes $1 million in drugs, rescues mariners who set boat on fire

Navy seizes $1 million in drugs, rescues mariners who set boat on fire
By: Jonathan Lehrfeld Military Times - 11-02-22

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A civilian fishing vessel burns in the Gulf of Oman on Oct. 29. (Navy)

The Navy seized an estimated $1 million in drugs this past weekend while rescuing a group of Iranian and Pakistani nationals who set fire to their fishing vessel in the Gulf of Oman, service officials said.

The Cyclone-class patrol ship Sirocco saved the civilian mariners on Oct. 29 while conducting a counter-smuggling operation in international waters, a press release from U.S. Naval Forces Central Command said.

Two other Cyclone-class patrol ships, the Chinook and Thunderbolt, extinguished the blaze before it later sank from significant damage, the release added.

The mariners, who jumped into the water after igniting their boat in flames, were smuggling hashish and methamphetamines. After receiving immediate medical care, they were transferred for additional treatment and repatriation.

“This was a superb effort by all of our crews,” Vice Adm. Brad Cooper, commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, U.S. 5th Fleet and Combined Maritime Forces, said in a release. “I couldn’t be prouder of everyone involved in saving lives while carrying out our mission to disrupt destabilizing maritime activity.”

Naval forces recovered around 1,230 pounds of hashish, worth an estimated $1 million, which accounted for about one-third of the total shipment. The rest was destroyed in the fire.

The incident came only three days after the sea service saved another three civilian mariners in the Gulf of Aden, where their small motorboat caught on fire.

In that case, sailors from the Navy’s Arleigh Burke-class destroyer Nitze and the Cyclone-class patrol ship Monsoon assisted the mariners before their vessel sank in international waters roughly 50 miles off the coast of Yemen.

Last year, the Sirocco rescued five Iranian smugglers from a burning vessel during another counter-smuggling operation in the Gulf of Oman, Navy Times previously reported. Navy personnel seized approximately $14.7 million worth of hashish, methamphetamine and heroin in the bust.
About this writer: Jonathan Lehrfeld: Jonathan is a staff writer and editor of the
Early Bird Brief newsletter for Military Times. Follow him on Twitter @lehrfeld_media
Personal note: They never give up transporting these products. Where ever they
were to unload these drugs will surely cut into their profit margins. No place to
hide in the sea - word of mouth followed by satellite's and radar makes the odds
pretty slim of not getting caught. They must be some real pot heads in those
3rd world countries. I don't know how and why these folks take those risk.
It's a shame so many people get hooked on those drugs once on it - you
don't easily get off it and will do almost anything to have it over and over
regardless of he cost. Shipper's and carrier's must make a good buck
escorting these drugs to the buyers and sellers. Another element in our
world that is destroying the end users.

O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

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