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Panga Boat on Goleta Beach

Evidence of Migrant Smuggling Found; No Arrests Made


A panga boat turned up on Goleta Beach Friday morning with no sign of drugs or its inhabitants on board. After a rash of more than 20 panga boats hitting Santa Barbara County shores in 2012, this is the first panga discovered this year.

A county park employee found the 30-foot boat on the shore of Goleta Beach at 5:18 a.m., Sheriff’s Department spokesperson Kelly Hoover said in a press release.

On the boat were about a dozen life jackets and more than 15 containers of fuel, as well as small amounts of food and clothing. There was no evidence of drugs, Hoover said, and no arrests made. While initially investigated by the Sheriff’s Department, the case has been turned over to the Department of Homeland Security.

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