Search and Rescue Continues for Missing Person at Sea off East End
Just before 11:30 PM on Tuesday 24 November, officers from the Cayman Islands Coast Guard while on border patrol came upon a suspicious vessel approximately two (2) nautical miles off the coast of East End. Upon approach by the CG patrol vessel, two of the occupants jumped overboard and into the water, taking packages with them.
The CICG team immediately began a search and rescue operation for the two males who had entered the water and were able to locate and rescue one of them after he had drifted away from the suspicious vessel. A further search was conducted in the vicinity and along the shoreline for the second person with negative results. Due to deteriorating weather conditions and treacherous seas (sea swells of 7 – 9 feet every 5 seconds) a dynamic risk assessment decision was made to have the CICG vessel seek the safest harbour, to ensure the health and safety of the three (3) remaining detained males (including two (2) others who had remained on the vessel) and the crew of the CICG vessel. RCIPS and CICG continue with both sea and shoreline searches, which resumed early this morning when it was safe to do so, assisted by the Air Operations Unit.
The RCIPS is seeking the assistance of the public to locate and identify this missing male who is described as being tall, dark-skinned with long dreadlocks, wearing shorts, and believed to be known as “Blacks” or “Paul”. An RCIPS Major Incident Room (MIR) has been activated and anyone with information about this person and incident is asked to contact the RCIPS MIR at 649-2930.
During the search and rescue operation, numerous packages were recovered in the suspicious vessel containing what is believed to be a significant quantity of Ganja. The three males from the suspicious vessel were detained and remain in custody under investigation. The investigation into the importation of the drugs, together with the search and rescue operation, continues with the oversight of the Office of the Ombudsman.