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Boat Reported Capsized With 48 Aboard; Four Bodies Recovered

December 23, 1986

MIAMI (AP) _ A boat said to have been carrying 48 people from the Dominican Republic was reported capsized off the coast of Puerto Rico on Monday night, and four bodies were immediately recovered, a U.S. Coast Guard spokesman said.

The boat apparently was trying to illegally enter the northwest tip of that island nation when the accident occurred, said Coast Guard spokesman Luiz Diaz of the Miami office.

Three men from the boat, which was reported capsized about 200 yards off the coast, swam to shore where they were arrested by Puerto Rican authorities, Diaz said. The men told authorities about the boat accident and a search was begun, which turned up four bodies, he said.

″We don’t have any names,″ Diaz said. ″We cannot confirm if there was a boat. We can only take the word of the detained.″

The Coast Guard and U.S. Navy dispatched helicopters to help Puerto Rican authorities and dive teams search for other victims.

Diaz said no other details were immediately available.

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