U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced Tuesday that a task force had uncovered a huge drug smuggling tunnel that stretched from southern California into Tijuana, Mexico.
“Agents on the San Diego Tunnel Task Force developed information about a transnational criminal organization suspected of smuggling narcotics into the U.S. via a cross-border tunnel,” a CBP press release said.
The federal law enforcement agency seized millions of dollars worth of narcotics from the tunnel.
“Agents seized approximately 1,300 pounds of cocaine, 86 pounds of methamphetamine, 17 pounds of heroin, 3,000 pounds of marijuana and more than two pounds of fentanyl from the tunnel,” according to the release. “The large seizure of mixed drugs represents the first time in San Diego’s history where five different types of drugs were found inside a tunnel. The total street value of the drugs seized from the tunnel is estimated at $29.6 million.”
CBP said the tunnel was 2,000 feet long, with an average depth of 31 feet and and average width of three feet. It stretched from a warehouse in the Otay Mesa area of San Diego to another warehouse south of the border, in Tijuana.
The structure was sophisticated, and was built with “reinforced walls, ventilation, lighting and an underground rail system,” CBP said.
Cardell T. Morant, acting special agent in charge of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in San Diego, congratulated the law enforcement entities involved in the bust.
“I’m proud of the excellent work performed by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) agents, as well as U.S. Border Patrol and Drug Enforcement Administration agents as integrated partners of the San Diego Tunnel Task Force. Their tenacity made the difference in shutting down this tunnel,” he said.
“I hope this sends a clear message that despite the ongoing public health crisis, HSI and our law enforcement partners will remain resilient and continue to pursue criminal organizations responsible for the cross-border smuggling of narcotics into the United States.”
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CBP Arrests Previously Deported Gang Member With Long Rap Sheet
U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) announced Tuesday that it arrested a foreign gang member who had wreaked havoc across America, committing multiple crimes in multiple states.
“U.S. Border Patrol agents arrested a previously deported Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) gang member east of Lukeville, Arizona, late Saturday evening,” according to a press release.
Carlos Flores-Marquez, 37, was caught attempting to cross into the United States through the desert. He admitted to being a member of the brutal Salvadoran MS-13 gang, known for committing heinous and violent crimes in the United States.
He also told agents he had been deported from the United States.
As it turns out, that deportation occurred earlier this year.
During Flores-Marquez’s processing, CBP found that he had “an extensive criminal history in Arizona, Florida and Virginia, where his 2016 arrest led to convictions for multiple felonies in Abermarle County.”
“Flores-Marquez now faces federal prosecution for immigration violations, as he is a previously deported felon,” the press release said.
CBP also explained the process by which it identified illegal aliens.
“All persons apprehended by the U.S. Border Patrol undergo criminal history checks using biometrics to ensure illegal aliens with criminal histories are positively identified,” according to the release.
CBP has said that the amount of interactions will illegal border crossers has sharply declined during the COVID-19 pandemic, and since President Donald J. Trump closed the borders to non-essential travelers.
Still, more than 4,000 would-be illegal aliens are being intercepted by the federal law enforcement entity each month.
Sanctuary State Demands Tighter Border Security Amid COVID Pandemic
The state of California, infamous for its “sanctuary” policies which protect illegal aliens from federal immigration authorities, has called for stricter border security measures amid the COVID-19 pandemic, eliciting a response from President Donald J. Trump.
Kristin Gaspar, a San Diego County Supervisor, reportedly sent a letter to Vice President Mike Pence saying that medical professionals in the county are “increasingly worried about the rapid spread of COVID-19 in northern Mexico” and that the county has seen “a sudden influx of critically ill patients from Mexico.”
President Trump, a border hawk whom the political left, including California Gov. Gavin Newsom, have fought tooth-and-nail in his efforts to secure the U.S. southern border, responded to the news on Twitter.
“Mexico is sadly experiencing very big CoronaVirus problems, and now California, get this, doesn’t want people coming over the Southern Border. A Classic! They are sooo lucky that I am their President. Border is very tight and the Wall is rapidly being built!” he said.
Mexico is sadly experiencing very big CoronaVirus problems, and now California, get this, doesn’t want people coming over the Southern Border. A Classic! They are sooo lucky that I am their President. Border is very tight and the Wall is rapidly being built!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 4, 2020
The acknowledgement from the far-left state that open borders and mass migration might harm Americans is the first of its kind during the Trump presidency.
The border is officially closed to non-essential travelers and U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) has recorded a sharp decline in interactions with illegal border crossers during the pandemic.
Still, thousands are crossing the border legally at the San Ysidro-Tijuana port of entry, just south of San Diego.
According to Fox News, even large healthcare organizations are calling for tighter border security measures during the pandemic.
The news titan noted that “Scripps Health President and CEO Chris Van Gorder and Sharp HealthCare COVID‐19 Strategic Response Executive Consultant Daniel Gross wrote a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf asking for help in dealing with coronavirus cases at the border.”