A sailboat carrying hashish was intercepted more than 360 kilometers off the coast of Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil, by a Brazilian Navy (MB, in Portuguese) ship, on June 16, 2021. The interagency operation between the MB and the Brazilian Federal Police (PF, in Portuguese) resulted in the seizure of more than 4 tons of the drug and the arrest of the vessel’s two crew members. Thanks to information exchange among the institutions, foreign authorities, and the MB’s Integrated Maritime Security Center, identifying the sailboat that had departed from Europe was made possible.
The operation involved materiel and personnel from the MB and PF, with the use of the offshore patrol vessel Araguari, which intercepted the vessel and carried out the seizure. Authorities transferred the sailboat’s two crew members to PF headquarters in Pernambuco for judicial police proceeding.
The MB intensified interoperability among institutions with the use of the Blue Amazon Management System (SisGAAz, in Portuguese), which is widely connected to PF networks, the Brazilian Institute of the Environment and Renewable Natural Resources, Brazil’s Federal Revenue, and Petrobras, among other agencies and companies capable of quickly promoting and sharing relevant and necessary information to protect the Blue Amazon.
The mission of these institutions is to monitor and control, in an integrated way, the search and rescue area and other areas of strategic interest in the South Atlantic, representing about 22 million square kilometers. The joint operation aims to ensure the protection of the environment and security at maritime borders, especially in the fight against transnational crimes, such as international narcotrafficking.
In February, another interagency operation resulted in the seizure of a vessel carrying more than 2 tons of cocaine in Brazilian jurisdictional waters. The MB, with the support of the PF and the cooperation of several international agencies based in Portugal, the United States, and the United Kingdom, intercepted the sailboat 270 km off the coast of Recife.
The MB monitors ship transit in Brazilian jurisdictional waters with support from national and international agencies and institutions, including the collaborative participation of ships.
SisGAAz is one of the MB’s strategic programs, whose objective is to increase this monitoring and control capacity, both in Brazilian waters, and in the area of responsibility for search and rescue at sea, through continuous improvement and the addition of systems, equipment, and new technologies.
The data captured by GPS is transmitted through satellite communication to tracking centers and, in the future, acoustic sensors will be incorporated to monitoring sites.