Federal agents seize 198 kilograms of cocaine from a cargo ship Miami Florida

Today U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and U. S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announce the seizure of 486 pounds of cocaine, with a wholesale value of more than $3.5 million. The shipment of cocaine was discovered, concealed in two hidden compartments between the ship's fuel tanks in the engine room, by a team of ICE agents and CBP inspectors last night who were searching the M/V MS. LYLY 1.

At approximately 7:00 p.m. on August 27, 2003, a team of agents and inspectors boarded the M/V MS. LYLY I and began a re-examination of the ship. The M/V MS. LYLY 1, a 184-foot cargo ship, arrived on the Miami River on August 16th, from Port Au Paix, Haiti, and had been searched previously.

The previous searches by CBP inspectors and information developed by ICE agents led last night's team to the machinery areas of the ship including the engine room.

At approximately 8:00 p.m. inspectors searching the engine room drilled a hole into the deck and when they removed the drill bit it was covered with a white powdery substance which field tested positive for cocaine.

An intensive search of the engine room resulted in the discovery of two concealed compartments located between the ship's two fuel tanks, under the ship's engine. Each compartment contained numerous kilogram-sized packages filled with cocaine. One-hundred and ninety-eight (198) packages were removed earlier this morning at approximately 8:00 a.m. after inspectors and agents spent more than 12 hours in their efforts to access the hidden compartments and remove the illegal cargo.

The ships crew of six (6), one Peruvian, one Cuban, two Haitian and two Hondurans, were interviewed throughout the night and no arrests have been made at this time.

Source: ICE

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