ICE shuts down cross-border drug tunnel in Nogales
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ICE shuts down cross-border drug tunnel in Nogales

Entrance hidden under porch of Arizona home

Federal agents shut down a drug tunnel that ran between Nogales, Sonora, and a home in Nogales, Ariz., on Tuesday, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement announced Wednesday.

The U.S. entrance to the tunnel was hidden beneath the porch of the home about a half mile west of the DeConcini Port of Entry. The Mexico entrance was a drainage tunnel that parallels the border on International Street, ICE said.

The tunnel runs 70 feet, is 3 feet wide, 2 feet tall and extends 25 feet into Mexico. The depth of the passageway, which has some internal support structures, ranges from 4 to 22 feet, ICE said.

"This latest tunnel discovery shows that our ongoing collaborative enforcement efforts to combat drug and contraband smuggling along the Southwest border are having a significant impact," said Kevin Kelly, assistant special agent in charge of HSI in Nogales, in a press release.

Also on Tuesday, Federal authorities found a drug tunnel running between a warehouse south of San Diego and site in Tijuana, Mexico, ICE said.

That tunnel was discovered after California Highway Patrol officers pulled over a truck seen leaving the warehouse during surveillance on the site by federal agents. Officers found about 3 tons of marijuana in the truck and another 6.5 tons in the warehouse, ICE said.

Authorities on the Tijuana side of the tunnel seized an additional 5 to 6 tons of marijuana, ICE said.

HSI is working with the Border Patrol, the Nogales Police Department and Mexico’s Secretary of Public Safety in the Arizona investigation.

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U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

The tunnel shut down by Homeland Security Investigation agents Tuesday is 70 feet long.