Missing Boater Juan Evelio Ferrer Gonzales Found, Under Investigation For Suspected Human Smuggling
MIAMI (CBSMiami) - A South Florida boater who had been missing for several days has been found.
Now he's under investigation for possible human smuggling.
The Coast Guard Southeast said crews found 54-year-old Juan Evelio Ferrer Gonzales alive Tuesday night about 10 miles off the coast of Jupiter after someone reported seeing a disabled vessel with two people aboard.
Gonzales was last heard from on Sunday. He was on his 22-foot white Chris-Craft with his reported stepson, a non-US citizen, leaving Bimini on his way to Homestead Bayfront Park. He was reported missing when he never showed up.
He had apparently run out of fuel. Both were reported in good condition.
"We are happy that Gonzales was found alive and well," said Cmdr. Eric Paré, search and rescue mission coordinator, Sector Miami. "We encourage mariners file a float plan, telling someone where they are going and when they are returning, have a good working VHF radio, and to always wear a life jacket."
"Maritime migration is dangerous and illegal," said Lt. Karolina Del Hierro Vega, a Coast Guard Seventh District Enforcement officer. "Human smuggling ventures, whether paid for or made by a friend or family member, are subject to criminal and civil penalties."
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