Here's A Weird One For You


Dec 2, 2000
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Easley South Carolina
A drug running sub. From MSNBC.com.
quote:

Submarine with cocaine seized off Costa Rica
Makeshift vessel carrying 3 tons of drugs en route from Colombia to U.S.

MSNBC News Services
Updated: 6:59 p.m. ET Nov 20, 2006
SAN JOSE, Costa Rica - Tipped off by three plastic pipes mysteriously skimming the ocean’s surface, authorities seized a homemade submarine packed with 3 tons of cocaine off Costa Rica’s Pacific coast.

Four men traveled inside the 50-foot wood and fiberglass craft, breathing through the pipes. The craft sailed along at about 7 mph, just six feet beneath the surface, Security Minister Fernando Berrocal said Sunday.

The submarine was spotted Friday 103 miles off the coast near Cabo Blanco National Park on the Nicoya peninsula.
For the rest of the story, go to http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/15811689/

Comment: This isn't even the first time it's been done either.
 

Jack Devine

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Jan 23, 2004
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Here's a little perspective: at $100 per gram, three metric tons of white powder would retail for $300,000,000. Three hundred million dollars. (The price comes from Google, not my own neighborhood, thank God.) With that kind of money at stake, it's no wonder there have been several of these homemade subs picked up. We will never know how many of them get through, and how many sink without a trace.
 

Dave Gittins

Member
Apr 11, 2001
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These guys will try anything.

The Australian government is to acquire small robot submarines equipped with cameras for the detection of containers of drugs attached to the hulls of ships. One or two have been found by divers recently.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>These guys will try anything. <<

Smugglers are a pretty imaginative lot and always have been. Sometimes, they're not even very subtle, such as bootleggers who ran illegal liquor into the U.S. during Prohibition. There were a few who went to sea with the crew armed to the teeth and that made for a rather nasty surprise for small Coast Gaurd vessels which got into firefights with them.

Not that the bootleggers actively sought out such encounters. Far from it. Smugglers work best by not drawing attention to themselves. It's one thing to be able to beat off a small patrol craft with armament little better then a small mounted machine gun or two, quite another to deal with a vessel the size of a warship and with the same weapons. Last time I looked, nobody had been able to figure out a way to outrun a 76 mm or a five inch shell and they're not about to try.

A small craft like one of these submersibles is going to be the devils own work to detect...especially at night...unless you happen to be looking right at it and the drug runners know it. Even with the method known, it's going to be very difficult to develop a countermeasure for them. By the time anyone figures out something that's going to work, the smugglers will have already come up with something new.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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They're still trying it. From ABC News:

Feds Nab Suspected Cocaine Smugglers in Pacific
quote:

U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced Wednesday that it stopped a vessel allegedly smuggling an estimated five metric tons of cocaine, worth an estimated $353 million.

Authorities arrested four suspected smugglers Monday, but not before they apparently intentionally sank the semi-submersible vessel. A Coast Guard detachment made the arrests and recovered 11 bales containing 1,210 pounds of cocaine.
Go to http://abcnews.go.com/TheLaw/story?id=3512231&page=1 for the rest.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From Pravda:

Colombia detains two homemade submarines ready to ship drugs
quote:

Colombian marines discovered two homemade submarines that were to ship drugs from the country's Pacific Coast.

The two submarines, made of fiberglass, were found in a clandestine shipyard in the swamps around Colombia's largest port, Buenaventura, the navy said in a statement.
Story at http://english.pravda.ru/news/world/31-10-2007/99954-submarines_drugs-0

Comment: No, that photo they used was most definately not one of the home made subs. While this story has a certain ring of truth, the same can't be said of everything these people put in print. If you don't believe me, take a gander at http://english.pravda.ru/science/mysteries/31-10-2007/99895-moon-0
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>Where's your spirit of adventure?<<

Right here by my computer. Safer and saner that way.

Sometimes.
wink.gif
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From Eircom.net:

Smugglers go beneath the waves to ship drug cargoes
quote:

COLOMBIA: Traffickers are building high-powered submersibles in jungle shipyards to move tonnes of cocaine, writes Juan Forero in Bahia Malaga, Colombia

In the annals of the drug trade, traffickers have swallowed cocaine pellets, dissolved the powder into ceramics and flown the drug as far as Africa on flimsy aircraft - anything to elude detection and get a lucrative product to market. Now, the cartels seem to be increasingly going beneath the waves, relying on submarines built in clandestine jungle shipyards to move tonnes of cocaine.
Full story at http://home.eircom.net/content/irelandcom/topstories/12162356?view=Eircomnet&cat=Top%20Stories

Comment: If the information in the article is correct, these are surprisingly sophisticated craft.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From The Charlotte Examiner:

Yellow submarine: Unmanned sub studies ocean
quote:

WASHINGTON (Map, News) - Far out in the Atlantic, a little yellow submarine is trying to slip from current to current, gliding across the ocean beneath the waves.

The unmanned sub is nearing the halfway mark in its effort to travel from New Jersey to Spain, collecting scientific data along the way.

It isn't a first trip for the device, but it will be the longest, a proving effort to show that an undersea glider can take its place in a global ocean observing system.
More at http://www.examiner.com/a-1484367~Yellow_submarine__Unmanned_sub_studies_ocean.html
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From The Navy Times:

Legislation targets drug-smuggling subs
quote:

Unregistered submersible and semi-submersible vessels often used to traffic drugs into the United States may soon be illegal.

Sen. Joseph Biden, D-Del., introduced the Drug Trafficking Interdiction Act of 2008 July 28. If approved, the bill will make it a “felony for those who knowingly or intentionally operate or embark in a [self-propelled semi-submersible] that is without nationality and that is or has navigated in international waters, with the intent to evade detection.” The bill will not impact researchers, explorers or others “who may legitimately be operating an SPSS.” The House already approved its version of the bill July 29.
More at http://www.navytimes.com/news/2008/07/coastguard_drugsub_073008w/

Comment: Ahhhhh...so what? The trade these blokes are mixed up in is already illegal. One more law on the books won't somehow magically do anything.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From Global Security.org:

Self-Propelled Semi-Submersible (SPSS) watercraft
quote:

From The 2cnd paragraph: Most drugs departing Colombia go by sea -- either "go-fast" boats, fishing vessels, commercial shipping, or the relatively new method of Self-Propelled Semi-Submersible watercraft (SPSS). Typically, in the eastern Pacific, fishing vessels carrying multi-ton loads of cocaine depart Colombian and Ecuadorian Pacific coast ports for delivery points along the Central American or Mexican coast. In the Caribbean, high-speed "go-fast" vessels, hauling as much as two metric tons of cocaine at a time, leave Colombia 's north coast for delivery points in the eastern Caribbean, or hug the Central American coastline in their track north to points along the Central American and Mexican coastlines. A fishing vessel operation can last up to six weeks, while go-fast operations run normally one or two days. The number of go-fast boats involved in smuggling has increased substantially in the past few years. Such craft are small, very fast, nearly invisible to radar, and difficult to see in daylight. To counter the go-fast threat, the Coast Guard has acquired new equipment and developed capabilities to use armed helicopters, over-the-horizon cutter boats, and non-lethal vessel-stopping technologies.
Full feature story with photos of the subs at http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/para/spss.htm
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From The Navy Times:

Sailors, Coasties nab cocaine-stuffed sub
quote:

Sailors and Coast Guardsmen aboard the frigate McInerney on Saturday intercepted a small sub carrying 37 bales of cocaine with an estimated street value of $187 million dollars.

Four Colombian drug smugglers were captured aboard the self-propelled semi-submersible in a night time raid about 350 miles from the Pacific coast of Guatemala, according to the Navy.
More with a couple of photos at http://www.navytimes.com/news/2008/09/navy_cocaine_091608w/
 

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