Coast Guard stops boat with 400 Haitians off the Bahamas that was likely headed to Florida

MIAMI — The U.S. Coast Guard stopped a migrant boat carrying nearly 400 people from Haiti near an isolated island in the Bahamas, according to Bahamian officials. The

Coast Guard on Sunday intercepted the 396 people near Cay Sal Bank, a remote island about 30 miles off the northern coast of Cuba, according to a statement released by the

Bahamian Department of Immigration. Sources had told the Miami Herald days before that the overloaded boat was likely headed toward the Florida Keys. Several overloaded

Haitian freighters packed with people leaving Haiti have shown up off the coast of the island chain since November 2021. The Coast Guard released a video of the boat

sailing as its crews approached on patrol boats and a C-144 Ocean Sentry plane flew low over the scene. The people on board are being transported to Bahamian authorities

aboard a Coast Guard cutter, the agency said in a statement. Rear Admiral Brendan McPherson, commander of U.S. Coast Guard District Seven, said crews had been following the

Haitian boat, but it was a migrant bobbing in the water off Cay Sal that helped lead to interdiction. “A cutter was patrolling through the area and they came across

somebody in the water, which in that area would be very, very unusual, “ he said. “They rescued that person; they brought him on board. It turned out that he was a Haitian citizen

who had been aboard this vessel we had been tracking for some time. As it turned out, he either fell asleep or somehow ended up in the water; had not the ship been patrolling

through the area, who knows what the outcome would had been.”