Latin America

Drug tunnel resembling El Chapo’s escape route found at Mexican border

The 123-meter passageway was allegedly being constructed by the Sinaloa cartel

Details of the tunnel found in Mexico near the US border. (Spanish narration).(atlas)

Mexican authorities have discovered a 123-meter tunnel at the border near Tijuana, which was reportedly being built by the Sinaloa cartel to transport drugs to the United States.

Details of the sophisticated tunnel, which included rail track and lighting fixtures, were revealed by Mexican law-enforcement officials on Sunday. The route was discovered on June 30 but so far no arrests have been made.

Over the past 10 years, authorities have discovered 181 tunnels at the border between Tijuana and San Diego

The tunnel appears to be similar to the passageway used by Sinaloa cartel leader Joaquín El Chapo Guzmán to escape from a maximum security prison on July 11.

Over the years, the cartel leaders have employed the use of tunnels to move quantities of drugs to the United States.

This latest passageway was found near the busy border crossing at Garita de San Ysidro, near Tijuana in Baja California state.

Soldiers guard the entrance of the warehouse where the secret tunnel was being constructed.
Soldiers guard the entrance of the warehouse where the secret tunnel was being constructed.REUTERS

Mexican defense officials said the tunnel, which had not been completed, was dug 5.7 meters deep and measured 1.7 meters high and 1.32 meters wide.

The entrance was located inside a warehouse carrying the company name Importadora y Exportadora Hega (Hega Imports and Exports), a firm that has little presence on the internet. A Google search shows the business listed as a cemetery construction company.

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On the US side, a gated fence has been built between the borders of Baja California and Sonora states, in the northeast part of Mexico. Some 10,000 people have died trying to reach the United States by making the crossing in the area since 1994.

Over the past 10 years, authorities have discovered 181 tunnels at the border between Tijuana and San Diego. There is little doubt that El Chapo is behind the excavations.

Since El Chapo’s daring escape last month, the government has called out some 10,000 police and troops to help capture him.

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