Multiple U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents were shot while boarding a suspected smuggling vessel off the coast of Puerto Rico on Thursday.
The CBP released a statement on the incident late Thursday morning, detailing the time and place of the operation. No details are available regarding the agents specific conditions. The organization has also yet to identify any of the victims.
“On Nov. 17, at approximately 8:00AM, three CBP Marine Interdiction Agents were involved in an exchange of gunfire with individuals on board a suspected smuggling vessel upon approach 14 miles off the coast of Cabo Rojo Puerto Rico. The Marine Agents suffered various gunshot injuries as a result,” the CBP said in a statement.
“The agents are being airlifted by CBP and Coast Guard to the Puerto Rico Trauma Center. The event is currently under investigation. Additional information will be provided as it becomes available,” the statement continued.
The incident comes just one day after border agents discovered $2 million worth of cocaine in a capsized boat off the Puerto Rican coast. The agents also discovered a dead man under the boat.
The boat was described as a 23-foot vessel with two outboard engines. A firearm was found inside and turned over to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). The drugs, which weighed roughly 198 pounds, tested positive as cocaine and were confiscated.
Puerto Rican authorities are investigating the dead male. The boat was taken to the Ramsey Border Patrol Station on the island territory.
This is a developing story. Check back soon for updates.
Louis Casiano contributed to this report.