Coast Guard, FBI, Border Patrol See Progress in Port Security Efforts - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

01/27/04 - Capitol Hill

Coast Guard, FBI, Border Patrol See Progress in Port Security Efforts

U.S. officials report progress in making seaports more secure.

FBI Deputy Assistant Director Gary Bald has told a Senate subcommittee on terrorism that the bureau has received information about possible plans for terrorist attacks on harbors and ports.

He says the FBI is looking at ways to "get ahead of the curve on those concerns."

The head of port security for the Coast Guard told the panel that suspicious ships, such as freighters owned by Osama bin Laden, are "tracked worldwide" by the Coast Guard's Intelligence Coordination Center and the Office of Naval Intelligence.

U.S. Customs and Border Patrol head Robert Jacksta assured the panel that illicit shipments bound for the U.S. will be intercepted. He says state-of-the-art technology should be screening 90 percent of all incoming cargo by year's end.

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