Tampa Mayor Jane Castor makes a surprising catch of $1.1 million worth of cocaine while fishing

Tampa Mayor Jane Castor is known for her law enforcement background and her leadership skills, but she recently added another achievement to her resume: catching a huge haul of cocaine while fishing with her family.

Tampa Mayor Jane Castor

A family fishing trip turns into a drug bust

Castor was fishing off the coast of the Florida Keys at the end of July with her family when they spotted a black package about the size of a microwave bobbing around in the water. Curious, they decided to reel it in and see what it was. To their astonishment, they discovered that the package contained 25 bricks of cocaine, each stamped with a purple butterfly. The drugs weighed approximately 70 pounds and had an estimated street value of $1.1 million, according to the U.S. Border Patrol.

Castor, who served as Tampa’s first female chief of police before becoming mayor, did not hesitate to report the find to the authorities. She saved the location of the package on her watch and contacted the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office, who then alerted the Border Patrol agents. The agents took custody of the drugs and thanked Castor for her cooperation.

“We appreciate the ongoing support from our boating community. Thanks to the efforts of this Good Samaritan, 70 pounds of cocaine are in federal custody and off our streets. We encourage the community to immediately report suspicious activity to local authorities,” Assistant Chief Patrol Agent Adam Hoffner said in a statement.

A rare and lucky catch

Castor’s spokesperson, Ashley Bauman, confirmed that the mayor and her family were involved in the incident and said that they were “shocked” by what they found. She also said that Castor was an avid fisherwoman who enjoyed spending time on the water.

“It was a rare and lucky catch for sure,” Bauman said.

Castor herself did not comment publicly on the incident, but she did share a photo of herself holding a large mahi-mahi fish on her Facebook page on July 23, the same day she found the cocaine. She captioned the photo: “Fishing in the Keys – great day on the water!”

The City of Tampa also posted about the incident on its Facebook page on Tuesday, saying: “Mayor Jane Castor is never off duty. This time, working with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office.”

More cocaine found in Florida waters

Castor’s cocaine catch was not the only one reported in Florida recently. On Sunday, lobster hunters found another brick of cocaine floating in the water near Islamorada and turned it over to the Border Patrol, according to the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office.

It is not clear where these packages of cocaine came from or how they ended up in the ocean, but authorities suspect that they may have been dropped by smugglers or fallen off a boat during a storm. The Border Patrol said that it was working with other federal agencies to investigate the source and destination of the drugs.

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