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Old as Dirt!
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Learning the HARD way...
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From the picture, it was clear that the sailboat was on the run;

- Picture: Leading Airman (Photographer) Stephen Johncock, Crown copyright​

...BaDum Bum! :)
 
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美国华人, 帆船
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Can anyone make out the name of the boat? It looks like flying a Bermuda Flag, not sure?
 

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Master Mariner
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Do you have any idea what becomes of the yacht in such circumstances? It looked too handsome to just scuttle, no? Left adrift?
Normally, in these circumstances the vessel is seized and towed to a port as evidence in the case. After the case is over, it goes up for auction. Every couple of years US Customs would hold an auction of vessels seized by the USCG in San Juan.
I'm guessing they were 'ratted on' by those who sold them the drugs, as we don't get boarded enough out here to make a chance encounter like this seem likely. That scenario was very common in the 70's and 80's.
 

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It is a shame that this happened. Another person persecuted for a 'victimless' crime. Victimless is quoted because there is an actual victim, the government agency that controls the 'illegal' drug trade.
 

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It is a shame that this happened. Another person persecuted for a 'victimless' crime. Victimless is quoted because there is an actual victim, the government agency that controls the 'illegal' drug trade.
Hopefully you had your sarcasm hat on when you typed that.
 
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Glad I found Sailnet
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From the picture, it was clear that the sailboat was on the run...

- Picture: Leading Airman (Photographer) Stephen Johncock, Crown copyright​
That and the helicopter was flying lower than the top of the mast!

Regards,
Bra
 

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Old as Dirt!
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Normally, in these circumstances the vessel is seized and towed to a port as evidence in the case. After the case is over, it goes up for auction. Every couple of years US Customs would hold an auction of vessels seized by the USCG in San Juan.
I'm guessing they were 'ratted on' by those who sold them the drugs, as we don't get boarded enough out here to make a chance encounter like this seem likely. That scenario was very common in the 70's and 80's.
Yes, I understand that, at least when the yacht is near shore (although what constitutes "near shore" may vary). It was my impression, however, that the yacht in question was rather far off-shore/on the high seas in which case, a tow back to shore would, I would suspect, tie up a pretty important navel asset for rather a long time and involve rather great cost in time and fuel. No?
 

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It is a shame that this happened. Another person persecuted for a 'victimless' crime. Victimless is quoted because there is an actual victim, the government agency that controls the 'illegal' drug trade.
Hopefully you had your sarcasm hat on when you typed that.
No, not at all.
There are a lot of differing viewpoints on US drug policy, and every one of them is a good way to get this thread shut down or moved to off-topic….
 

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Minne is correct. Turn this into a discussion on the pros/cons of cocaine and its off to PRWG for this wee thread. If anyone wants to discuss dope in general and the politics thereof please start a new thread in PRWG.

Any further posts on the subject will be deleted.
 

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Can anyone make out the name of the boat? It looks like flying a Bermuda Flag, not sure?
The flag looks more like the British Ensign than the Bermudian flag which has the coat of arms in the fly. The Ensign has nothing.

The assumption has been that the boat was on the high seas. Can a boat be boarded when it is not within any country's jurisdiction?

I think I have read that a U.S. documented boat can be boarded by the USCG anywhere in the world and maybe this is the case for the British coastguard.
 

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Here's another article:
HMS Argyll makes $15m drugs bust

It says "encountered a suspect yacht in the North Atlantic about 150 miles south of the Island" and "it was too early to be sure of the destination of the drugs, there was a fair chance that some of it was intended for Bermuda."

So that's kinda in the middle of nowhere, and apparently headed north since they think the drugs were destined for Bermuda.

I wonder what made the boat suspicious? Is this an odd time of year to be heading north to Bermuda?
 

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Bringing this thread back on topic… I recall (somewhat vaguely) reading an article where the RN either captured a drug runner or a single hander in distress in mid ocean. One of the young lieutenants onboard the HMS had sailing experience so they formed a prize crew around him and the prize crew sailed the vessel independently to port.

The country of registry has the right to board your vessel in international waters at any time. They can (and do) assign this right to other countries to do the same. You can be a British vessel and be stopped by the USCG for a drug search for example.
 

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Normally, in these circumstances the vessel is seized and towed to a port as evidence in the case. After the case is over, it goes up for auction. Every couple of years US Customs would hold an auction of vessels seized by the USCG in San Juan.
Having sailed in places where drug checks on arriving foreign yachts are routine, I would be real wary of buying a vessel that has been used for transporting the stuff.

Just because the vessel got caught this time doesn't mean that it was the only trip. That boat could have transported many consignments and have strong traces of dope everywhere. When the Australian customs boys swabbed my boat at Christmas Island, (and found nothing) they said that even the tiniest trace of dope would register on their swabs. And they swabbed every surface, every locker, every drawer.

Good luck voyaging in places like that with a boat used to transport the stuff in seemingly huge bulk and explaining to the Customs people, especially to the non-English-speaking authorities in Indonesia/Thailand/Singapore, that the dope hasn't been on the boat since you've owned it.

I don't like your chances. And in those places they execute people for dope smuggling.
 
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Having sailed in places where drug checks on arriving foreign yachts are routine, I would be real wary of buying a vessel that has been used for transporting the stuff.

Just because the vessel got caught this time doesn't mean that it was the only trip. That boat could have transported many consignments and have strong traces of dope everywhere. When the Australian customs boys swabbed my boat at Christmas Island, (and found nothing) they said that even the tiniest trace of dope would register on their swabs. And they swabbed every surface, every locker, every drawer.
What if your boat was once in the Moorings fleet? I can imagine some of those renters were sticking something up their nose at some point.

Heck, what if you're the next renter after a drug-laden blowout the previous week? Swabs on every surface would catch something.

Regards,
Brad
 

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Bristol 45.5 - AiniA
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Having sailed in places where drug checks on arriving foreign yachts are routine, I would be real wary of buying a vessel that has been used for transporting the stuff.

Just because the vessel got caught this time doesn't mean that it was the only trip. That boat could have transported many consignments and have strong traces of dope everywhere. When the Australian customs boys swabbed my boat at Christmas Island, (and found nothing) they said that even the tiniest trace of dope would register on their swabs. And they swabbed every surface, every locker, every drawer.

Good luck voyaging in places like that with a boat used to transport the stuff in seemingly huge bulk and explaining to the Customs people, especially to the non-English-speaking authorities in Indonesia/Thailand/Singapore, that the dope hasn't been on the boat since you've owned it.

I don't like your chances. And in those places they execute people for dope smuggling.
You must have looked suspicious :) or it was just time for a random check. We did the check-in for Christmas Island on the fancy dock there.

I guess if you can be inspected by the forces of a country it would make sense to be registered in a country like Kazakhstan or Botswana that don't have such a navy (or coast).

When we were in the San Blas (Nargana) they busted a Colombian coastal trading vessel that had something like 900 kg of cocaine on it. It was such a big capture that it was reported on CNN International. It was hidden in the hold under sacks of rice and flour. Bad timing for the bad guys. The army were having a training exercise in town with about 150 soldiers. The army did something very smart. They gave the chief of the village all of the cargo on the ship (foodstuffs, plastic and metal things). Might help with the next tip.

I talked to one of the soldiers (my bad Spanish, his bad English, gestures) and he said that they were assigned to duty in the jungles of the Darien Gap along the border with Colombia for a month and then back to their base for a month. Sounded like a very hard life - the Darien is infamous.
 
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