At about 10:20 p.m., SDAMB Multi-role Enforcement Aircraft crew detected a single-engine panga with nine people aboard and guided a SDAMB Coastal Interceptor Vessel to the suspected boat.
The CIV crew attempted to stop the vessel utilizing blue lights, sirens and a spotlight, however, the panga failed to stop. Air and Marine Operations agents were able to place disabling rounds into the suspects’ engine and bring it to a stop 12 nautical miles west of Carlsbad.
U.S. Border agents then took custody of the suspects.
“AMO agents and our Regional Law Enforcement partners remain vigilant, committed and focused on detecting, intercepting and disrupting smuggling attempts off the Southern California coast, said Timothy Sutherland, Director of the San Diego Air and Marine Branch. “This interdiction is another example of AMO’s unique capabilities, which combines technology, aviation and maritime assets and the training and expertise of our dedicated agents.”
Officials say this investigation is currently ongoing.