MONROE COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — A Miami man was arrested earlier this month after deputies said he stole a $60,000 commercial fishing boat from a Marathon resident.
The victim told deputies that his 40-foot fishing vessel had been stolen on Nov. 8. He said a former employee from Cuba, Cristian Torres Perez, recently quit and had been talking about returning to Cuba because “he disliked living in the U.S.”
The sheriff’s office said it reported the stolen boat and worked with Key Colony Beach Police, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Border Patrol, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and U.S. Homeland Security Investigations.
Hours later, deputies said the U.S. Coast Guard told the victim that his emergency beacon was activated about 50 miles south of Key West.
A U.S. Coast Guard aircraft spotted the boat and one person onboard waving his arms for help because the boat had become inoperable, deputies said.
A tanker picked up the person, who was identified as Torres Perez. The U.S. Coast Guard took him back to Key West.
Deputies said Torres Perez was later taken to jail.