SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions discussed record-setting drug seizures in San Diego today.
Rep. Duncan Hunter, Rep. Darrell Issa, and U.S. Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Paul Zukunft joined Sessions at the news conference at the Tenth Ave. Marine Terminal.
Coast Guard officials offloaded more than 50,000 pounds of cocaine and heroin since the beginning of August. The drugs have a street value of almost $680 million.
"By preventing overdoses and stopping new addictions before they start, enforcing our drug laws saves lives," Attorney General Sessions said. "This record-breaking year by our Coast Guard saw the arrest of more than 600 suspected drug traffickers and kept nearly half a million pounds of dangerous drugs from getting to our streets--and ultimately to our neighbors, friends, and families."
Adm. Zukunft said the Coast Guard has seized more than 455,000 pounds this year - more than all of last year.
"These drugs represent the scale of the threat transnational organized crime poses to our nation and to all peaceful nations of the Western Hemisphere," Adm. Zukunft said. "The Coast Guard and Justice Department, along with interagency partners, are determined to commit our efforts to detect, interdict, investigate and prosecute the entirety of these criminal networks and end the drug fueled instability and violence in the region."
Between 2002 and 2011, the Coast Guard said information obtained from apprehended suspects has led to the arrest and extradition of more than 75 percent of drug kingpins.
City News Service contributed to this report.