updated 8/1/2011 5:06:06 PM ET 2011-08-01T21:06:06

The U.S. Coast Guard says its crews helped stop a submarine-like craft filled with $180 million of cocaine in the western Caribbean.

The Coast Guard said Monday that a cutter found the semi-submersible craft July 13 off the coast of Honduras near the Nicaraguan border. Officials say it was found with the help of a U.S. Customs and Border Protection airplane.

The watercraft sank, but it was found Tuesday after several searches by the Coast Guard, FBI dive teams and the Honduran Navy. An FBI dive team recovered nearly 7.5 tons of cocaine, which were turned over to U.S. law enforcement.

Similar crafts regularly smuggle drugs along Central America's Pacific Coast, though U.S. and Honduran authorities said this was the first time such a vessel was intercepted in Caribbean waters.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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    >>> and 12,000 federal prisoners sentenceded because of crack-cocaine could have their sentences reduced because of a retroactive law applied by congress. under the old rules a violation that would land a powder cocaine user in jail for one day would have put a crack offender behind bars for 100 days , and now the ratio is one day to 18 days. the commission's ruling affects primarily nonviolent offenders sentenced under a 1984 harsh law for crack-cocaine offenses, and half of these people sentenced are after can americans.

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