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United States Coast Guard Maritime law enforcement seizure of boats, weapons, and contraband - Research Paper Example

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The country takes a no tolerance stance towards the trafficking of drug. In the last decade the country has particularly targeted the trafficking of illegal marijuana and cocaine from the bordering countries especially the Latin American countries. …
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United States Coast Guard Maritime law enforcement seizure of boats, weapons, and contraband
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Download file to see previous pages The paper reflects the role of the Coast Guard of US which enquires, inspects and searches the waters for the violators of United States maritime laws including traffickers of drugs, arms and to prevent illegal human migration. Introduction The United States have entered into a number of counter-narcotics agreements with different countries. In total there are 25 countries which have a law enforcing agreement including 3 countries that entered into the agreement after the completion of military installation in the Panama Canal in 2000. The countries include many of the Latin American countries like Colombia, Costa Rica, Jamaica, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Trinidad and Tobago, Venezuela etc. The agreements are based on a number of clauses and allow the coast guards different degree of freedom to enforce the maritime counter-narcotics laws of the United States.
According to the ship-boarding provisions the authorities of United States can take quick permission from the other countries for the coast guards to search a vessel for illegal trafficking. In some cases no permission are required from the respective countries to board and search the vessel. Most of the countries except El Salvador, Netherlands Antilles and Aruba and Turks and Caicos have this agreement with the United States. According to the ship-rider provision the coast guards can position officers on the vessels of the countries. Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador and Venezuela are the only countries that do not have an agreement of ship-riding with the United States. Pursuit provision has given the Coast Guards the ability to chase a vessel or aircraft into the territories of different country or search their vessel in the absence of available vessel or aircrafts of the country. All the countries have agreed on this provision except for Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador, Turks and Caicos and Venezuela (United States Government Accountability Office, 2005, pp. 39-40). Role of Coast Guard Coast Guard is one of the premier forces for the enforcement of laws and has a high number of arrests and seizures each year (Roach, Smith, 1996, p. 491). The following table shows the removal statistics of Coast Guard Drug removal (year wise) in pounds United States Coast Guard, 2011 Narcotics One of the major duties of the United States coast guard is to identify and interdict the drugs smuggled through water mainly by the small sea vessels. Near the coastal areas the coast guards ensure the enforcement of drug laws in collaboration with the United States Customs Service. Further away into the ocean the US coast guards are the primary force responsible for enduring the drug laws. The major regions of duty of the force rest in the Gulf of Mexico, the Caribbean and in the region of South Florida. In the former two areas the force looks out for mother ships that transfer their cargo to the smaller boats which carry it to the coasts. Apart from the drugs the other items of marine trafficking are arms and illegal human transport. The United States coast guards also carry out regular missions to prevent these kinds of trafficking. The force also ensures that the United States marine reserves like fisheries and other reserves are protected from the outsiders. Often the vessels of transport are seized by the force (Kash, Cross, 1987, 34-35; University of Virginia). In 1994, 28 vessels were seized by the United States Coast Guards which is a sharp decline from the previous year’s trends. Most of these vessels were carrying large ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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