WILLEMSTAD–For the fourth time in three months, Dutch navy patrol vessel Zr. Ms. Groningen conducted a major drug bust in the Caribbean Sea. The ship stopped a “go-fast” boat carrying more than 1,400 kilogrammes (kg) of cocaine on December 2.
The go-fast was spotted by a Dutch Caribbean Coast Guard (DCCG) Dash 8 aircraft on December 2.
Zr. Ms. Groningen was tasked for this case and the ship activated her NH90 helicopter to collect information. At the same time the ship launched a fast raiding, interception and special-forces craft (FRISC), a fast speedboat with a combined team of United States (US) Coast Guard personnel and Royal Netherlands Marines on board.
Authorities eventually forced the go-fast to stop and the smugglers surrendered. After searching the go-fast, US Coast Guard personnel discovered 1,421kg of cocaine on board. The smugglers and the contraband were transferred to a US Coast Guard vessel in the area.
The smugglers are to be prosecuted in the US.
Zr. Ms. Groningen has been stationed in the Caribbean since April and is part of the “oceangoing patrol vessel exchange crew” pilot project. This means the ship sails in the Caribbean Sea for two years, but her crew rotates periodically.
The current crew conducted three other drug interceptions in October and November since their rotation in September. In total, the current crew has intercepted more than 2,900kg of drugs.
Zr. Ms. Gronigen’s tasks in the Caribbean include the execution of counter-drug operations and supporting the DCCG.
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/93272-dutch-navy-seizes-1-400kg-of-cocaine