While Carnival Breeze and Carnival Valor were enroute from the Caribbean to Galveston, in international waters near Corpus Christi, Texas, cocaine smugglers were off shore.
According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection press release on December 8, 2017, “On November 13, 2017 the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Air (CBP) and Marine Operations (AMO) along with other agencies tracked the self-propelled semi-submersible vessel through international waters, according to a CBP statement. A day later, a Coast Guard vessel intercepted the drug smugglers, arrested the three-member crew and seized 3,800 pounds of cocaine.
On November 13, a U.S. Coast Guard cutter intercepted the vessel, arrested the crew, and recovered over 3,800 pounds of cocaine. All three suspects will face charges in the U.S.
AMO operates maritime patrol aircraft from Corpus Christi, Texas, and Jacksonville, Florida, to conduct long-range aerial patrols and surveillance missions along the U.S. borders and in drug transit zones in Central and South America. P-3 aircrews detect, monitor, and disrupt smuggling activities before they reach shore.”
These kind of drug smuggling arrest are not rare, they take place on average of once per year in the Caribbean. Drug smugglers from Mexico smuggle tons of illegal drugs using submersible or semi submersible vessels routinely. The video below is from 2009.
Video: Cocaine Subs | National Geographic