SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — The crew of Coast Guard Cutter Joseph Doyle repatriated 44 migrants to the Dominican Republic, Wednesday, following two makeshift vessel interdictions in Mona Passage waters off the west coast of Puerto Rico.
The Coast Guard, along with Homeland Security Task Force – Southeast partners, maintains a continual presence with air, land, and sea assets in the Florida Straits, the Windward Passage, the Mona Passage and the Caribbean Sea, collaborating to protect safety of life at sea. With their combined multi-layered approach, they were able to interdict these unlawful, irregular maritime migration events.
“An open ocean transit in an overloaded and unsafe vessel like one of these yolas is an extremely dangerous undertaking,” said Lt. Cmdr. David S. Radin, Coast Guard Cutter Joseph Doyle commanding officer. “Thanks to the diligence and professionalism of the cutter crew and our interagency partners we were able to deliver these undocumented migrants safely to shore.”
During the first interdiction, the Joseph Doyle crew interdicted a 20-foot makeshift vessel that was initially detected by the aircrew of Customs and Border Protection multi-role enforcement aircraft, Monday, in waters northwest of Aguadilla, Puerto Rico.
In the second interdiction, the Joseph Doyle crew interdicted a 25-foot makeshift vessel that was initially detected by the aircrew of Customs and Border Protection multi-role enforcement aircraft, Tuesday, in waters northwest of Desecheo Island, Puerto Rico.
The Joseph Doyle crew transferred the 44 migrants to a Dominican Republic Navy vessel in water just off Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, completing their repatriation. The interdicted migrants claimed to be Dominican Republic nationals except for two who claimed to be Haitian.
Since Oct. 1, 2022, through May 31, 2023, the Coast Guard has interdicted 46 migrant vessels in the Mona Passage and waters near Puerto Rico. Interdicted during this period were 1,473 non-U.S. citizens including 1,209 Dominicans, 242 Haitians, 13 Venezuelans, seven Kazakhs, one Albanian, one Colombian, and one other of undetermined nationality.
Cutter Joseph Doyle is a 154-foot fast response cutter that is homeported in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
U.S. residents inquiring about family members potentially interdicted at sea by the Coast Guard, please contact the office of your local federal U.S. representative or Senator. Relatives located outside the United States please contact family members who are U.S. residents to follow the same process on your behalf.
Make a difference on land, at sea or in the air with the U.S. Coast Guard. Visit https://www.gocoastguard.com/ to find out how to be a part of the team.
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