Offbeat

San Diego-Tijuana Drug Super Tunnel

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A recently discovered underground passageway for transporting drugs between San Diego and Tijuana is so sophisticated that authorities call it the “super tunnel.”  It’s 4 feet tall, 3 feet wide and spans nearly six football fields. The tunnel features an advanced ventilation system, lighting and a rail system capable of transporting large amounts of illegal drugs.

This highly sophisticated tunnel was discovered by the San Diego Tunnel Task Force, which is comprised of ICE, U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

Three people were taken into custody along with the seizure of 8 tons of marijuana and 325 pounds of cocaine according to a statement by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.  The estimated street value of the bust was $12 million.

San Diego - Tijuana Drug Bust 2013 Yields 8 Tons of Marijuana and 325 Pounds of Cocaine

San Diego – Tijuana Drug Bust 2013 Yields 8 Tons of Marijuana and 325 Pounds of Cocaine

The tunnel was built by the Sinaloa Cartel, a drug-trafficking, money laundering and organized crime syndicate which controls the “Golden Triangle” of Sinaloa, Durango, and Chihuahua.  The Sinaloa Cartel was founded in 1960s and is based in the city of Culiacán, Sinaloa where it derives its name.  The United States Intelligence Community considers the Sinaloa Cartel “the most powerful drug trafficking organization in the world.”

The leader of the Sinaloa Cartel is none other than Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman who has made a name for himself by climbing his way to the top of the drug smuggling business.  It is estimated by Forbes magazine that “El Chapo” is worth north of $1 billion.

U.S. Attorney Laura Duffy told reporters “If you continue to build and attempt to use these tunnels, we are determined to make this a big waste of your dirty money. Not only will we take your drugs and shut down your tunnels before you even get an opportunity to use them, but we’re now in a position where we’re going after your management.”

This isn’t the first time that drug cartels have tried to build complex tunnels to transport drugs across the border.  “It was just two years ago, November 2011, that we discovered and shut down two elaborate super tunnels like the one here today,” Duffy said. “And at the time we did so, we stood before you and we warned the cartels directly. If you build them, we’re going find them, and if we find them, we’re going to destroy them. Today, we again make good on that promise.”

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