Yesterday, after knocking was heard aboard, the Coast Guard started to search containers on a container ship that had started its voyage in India weeks ago. After a day-long search at the Port of Newark, the Department of Homeland Security said, "After a lengthy and exhaustive inspection by the Department of Homeland Security Officials, the search for stowaways aboard the Ville D'Aquarius has concluded with no stowaways found. Officers from U.S. Customs and Border Protection with assistance from ICE-Homeland Security Investigations, the U.S. Coast Guard and the Port Authority of NY/NJ, utilized X-Ray machines, K-9 units and officers on the ground to search over 163 containers."
Coast Guard spokeswoman id Lt. Fannie Wilks said, "Typically, if there's evidence on board, we will find a stowaway. This time we didn't." Apparently, during a random, routine search, Coast Guard officers tapped in one part of the ship and heard tapping back. Wilks explained, "They heard tapping back and it continued for six hours but it became weaker and weaker, the sound, until it went away." She did not believe that the search could have missed a stowaway.
The cost of the search was unknown. There had been rumors that there were Pakistani stowaways aboard and that the stowaways were dead. The NY Times reports, "Police officers on the scene wondered aloud about how the 'bad intel' had spread so widely so quickly." This has not been a good month for the Coast Guard—there was a hoax of a yacht explosion off NJ two weeks ago.