DEA Helps in Seizure of First Narco Submarine in Ecuador

Last week I wrote about the DEA and narcosubmarines.

Today, the DEA helped Ecuadoran police seize one.

The DEA says (received by e-mail, no link yet, press release should be available here soon):

As a result of DEA intelligence, Ecuadorian authorities were able to seize the vessel before it was able to make its maiden voyage. This is the first seizure of a clandestinely constructed fully operational submarine built to facilitate trans-oceanic drug trafficking.

I'm not sure why this is a first. In 2008, when Captain Nemo was arrested, police said they found two and destroyed them. More on Captain Nemo here.

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    Owners obviously were "cowboys" who... (none / 0) (#1)
    by Yes2Truth on Sun Jul 04, 2010 at 05:30:20 PM EST

    failed or refused to join a company-approved
    venture.  Lots of suspicious possibilities going on
    with this one.  First off, why would DEA bust an empty "sea mule"?

    Very possible this is related to a CIA operation
    designed to undermine the government of Ecuador.

    Also possible that it was done to punish a competitor of a group that CIA finds easier to do business with.

    In any event, it's the kind of interference with
    the internal affairs of a sovereign nation that should alarm people, but instead will be met with
    typical insouciance...even by most progressives.

    What is so puzzling? (none / 0) (#2)
    by Gerald USN Ret on Mon Jul 05, 2010 at 09:31:04 PM EST
    Just because the logic is not apparent doesn't mean that the people that made the decisions didn't have good reasons.

    My [[guess]] is they took down the people that built the thing or the crew on cargo for the boat, or they were trying to do that and the perps ran off, and so they were left with a boat they had to go ahead and seize or everyone would question why they hadn't seized it.  People like "yestotruth" for example.

    And yes other similar boats have been seized including some at sea that were not able to be scuttled in time by the crew, though I suspect that maybe they really didn't want to scuttle the boat and then not be picked up.

    One thing though, this boat was larger than some of the others I have seen remarked on.

    Ok, I found this:

    "Since 2006, when the first semi-submersible craft was detected, 47 have been captured at sea and on land - including 17 last year. But so far this year, only three have been captured. The number of voyages has probably dropped, officials said, because of their success in detecting the vessels with a variety of methods including aircraft that can identify their wake in the water."



    This one is actually a much more advanced sub than the others.

    By the way, I have a friend who commanded a real USS submarine.  One night they were under way down in that same area and were cruising on the surface and though the main bulk of the ship was under water, the tower is pretty high. Anyway, at first they noted that there was someone else in the area at a good distance, and then that the other ship was making considerable knots to catch up to them.

    The sub did have running lights and such, but obviously the other ship a coast guard vessel didn't recognize what they were coming up on from behind, and suddenly the sub and my friend, commanding, were hailed with the cutter identifying itself and essentially ordering the vessel with those lights over there to identify itself and to "heave to"

    My friend replied some what caustically that "This is the ** nuclear ** USS **" and "How are you doing this fine evening?"

    We assumed that there were some red faces over on the cutter, and then some fond farewells as both vessels went their separate ways with a new sea tale to tell when the lights are low.

    ((( I love the sea. It might seem boring to the uninitiated a lot of the time, but then it becomes realer than real.)))

    Shallow water (none / 0) (#3)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Mon Jul 05, 2010 at 10:15:05 PM EST

    Nukes generally only run on the surface if in shallow water.  Of course you have to be at least six feet tall to join the Coast Guard.  That way you can walk back to shore if your ship sinks.

    "the perps ran off" (none / 0) (#4)
    by Yes2Truth on Tue Jul 06, 2010 at 08:50:06 AM EST

    Ain't that peculiar!  They must be really, really
    fast and fleet on their feet.  Agile, too.  

    DEA & Po Po weren't armed?

    Sorry, captain.  Very weak guess, imo.