Three border agents shot while boarding suspected smuggling boat near Puerto Rico, report

The agents are being airlifted to the Puerto Rico Trauma Center.

Updated: November 17, 2022 - 12:12pm

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Three U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents were shot, including one fatally, on Thursday while attempting to board a suspected smuggling vessel near the coast of Puerto Rico, officials said.

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas told Congress that he has been briefed on the "tragic loss of one of our front-line personnel" and that "several others were gravely wounded," according to The Associated Press.

The department said that around 8 a.m., three Marine Interdiction Agents "were involved in an exchange of gunfire with individuals on board a suspected smuggling vessel," Fox News reported. 

"The Marine Agents suffered various gunshot injuries as a result," the department said.

The agents are being airlifted to the Puerto Rico Trauma Center and authorities are investigating the incident, officials said.