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Saturday, 02 January 2016 17:41

Coast Guard Chases Down Stolen Boat Across Gulf 300+ miles Featured

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Boat Chase Boat Chase Air Station Miami

Fort Myers Beach became the center of national focus this past week when the U.S. Coast Guard and
the Lee County Sheriff’s Department combined their efforts to apprehend a trio
of alleged boat thieves in a chase that spanned nearly the entire Gulf of
Mexico. Given the scope of the pursuit, it’s not hard to see why it garnered so
much attention.

On Thursday morning, a trio of suspects lowered a 300-horsepower center-console boat into the back
bay of Fort Myers Beach near Old Pelican, beginning a 345 mile trek, tailed by
law enforcement the entire time. Lee County Deputies began the chase, pursuing
the stolen boat into the Gulf, and the United States Coast Guard joined in a
short time later, deploying both surface and airborne resources to aid in the
operation, including the cutter William Trump and multiple
aircraft.

At around 8:30 pm that same Thursday, the boat came to a stop roughly 125 miles east of Cancun,
Mexico, where Suspects David Vazquez of Miami, Raul Delavega-Sauri of Homestead,
and Vidal Benhur Ramirez-Farfan of Mexico were apprehended by authorities
without incident. All three face burglary and grand theft charges, and Vazquez
faces additional charges for assault and attempting to flee from officers. They
are currently being held with bail set at $1.25 million for Delavega-Sauri and
Ramirez-Farfan, and $1.5 million for Vazquez.

“We sent a strong message here to the law-abiding citizens and I think we sent a very strong
message to the would-be criminals: If they target Southwest Florida for marine
theft, they’re going to have a tough go of it,” Lee County Sheriff Mike Scott
said at a press conference on the weekend following the conclusion of the chase.

Read 1747 times Last modified on Saturday, 02 January 2016 17:51

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