On Tuesday morning, millions of dollars worth of seized cocaine and marijuana arrived at Mayport aboard a Navy frigate.
Crews aboard the USS Nicholas confiscated the drugs as part of a six-month counter-drug and crime operation in Central and South America called Operation Martillo. It's Spanish for "hammer" to signify hammering down on drugs.
For the last six months, U.S. Coast Guard, Navy and Customs and Border Patrol crews have worked to confiscate 7,500 pounds of cocaine and 320 pounds of marijuana.
"It was a 175-day deployment down to South America off the coast of Panama and Colombia," Lt. Commander Corey Barker said. "During that time they were able to make six interdictions, which is responsible for this massive amount of drugs coming back to Mayport."
IMAGES: USS Nicholas arrives at Mayport
The USS Nicholas offloaded the drugs valued at $93 million wholesale, but authorities say the street value is triple that.
"We've been doing this a long time and any time we can keep drugs off the streets of the United States, that's a win for the Coast Guard, for the Navy, win for the governments, for the people of the country," said Coast Guard spokesman Lt. Scott Carr.
The operations in foreign waters are a collective effort. Navy and Customs and Border Protection find the boats. Then the Coast Guard's Law Enforcement Detachment Team, which includes ships from other countries in the area, perform the tactical boardings of the ships to seize the drugs.
"Once they identify the target that needs to be boarded, that Navy ship actually hoists up a Coast Guard flag and switches their tactical control from the Navy to the United States Coast Guard so they can conduct law enforcement," Lt. Carr said.
The helicopter crew that assisted in the seizures is from Jacksonville and the patrol planes that detected the drug boats are based at Cecil Field.