THE JOKE OF HOMELAND SECURITY… no wonder Obama stopped the building of the wall! The illegals are climbing through the sewers!
Mexican drugs tunnel found with its own railway system and underground warehouses containing 20 tons of marijuana
By Daily Mail Reporter
Last updated at 4:56 AM on 27th November 2010
A sophisticated cross-border tunnel - equipped with a rail system, ventilation and fluorescent lighting - has been shut down by U.S. and Mexican officials.
It is the second such tunnel discovered in San Diego this month, authorities said today.
The tunnel is 2,200 feet long and runs from the kitchen of a home in Tijuana, Mexico, to two warehouses in San Diego's Otay Mesa industrial district.
Sophisticated: A Mexican soldier patrols a tunnel discovered under a warehouse on the Mexico/U.S. border. The tunnel has its own lighting and railway
Mike Unzueta, head of investigations at U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in San Diego, said the cinderblock-lined entry to the tunnel dropped 80 to 90 feet to a wood-lined floor.
From the U.S. side, there was a stairway leading to a room about 50 feet underground that was full of marijuana.
Mr Unzueta said: 'It's a lot like how the ancient Egyptians buried the kings and queens.'
Kitchen entrance: The Mexican entrance to the tunnel is under a suburban kitchen, dropping about 80ft to a wooden floor. Eight people have been arrested
Authorities seized more than 20 tons of marijuana, and Mr Unzueta said the tunnel - and another found in early November - are the work of Mexico's Sinaloa cartel, headed by the country's most-wanted drug lord, Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman.
Mr Unzueta said: 'We think ultimately they are controlled by the same overall cartel but that the tunnels were being managed and run independently by different cells operating within the same organisation.'
The newly discovered passage is one of the most advanced to date, with sophisticated construction and a rail system for drugs to be carried on a small cart.
Drug transport: The secret passageway extends around 2,200ft from Tijuana to warehouses in San Diego, where a large amount of marijuana was being stored.
Three men were arrested in the United States, and the Mexican military raided a ranch in Mexico and made five arrests in connection with the tunnel, authorities said.
U.S. authorities have discovered more than 125 clandestine tunnels along the Mexican border since the early 1990s, though many were crude and incomplete.
U.S. authorities do not know how long the latest tunnel was operating. Mr Unzueta said investigators began to look into several warehouses in June on a tip that emerged from a large bust of marijuana, cocaine and methamphetamine by the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department.
U.S. authorities followed a trailer from one of the warehouses to a Border Patrol checkpoint in Temecula, where they seized 27,600 pounds of marijuana.
The driver, whose name was not released, was arrested, along with two others who went to a residence in suburban El Cajon that had $13,500 cash inside.
Mr Unzueta said: 'That [trailer] was literally filled top to bottom, front to back. There wasn't any room for anything else in that tractor-trailer but air.'
Three tons of marijuana were found in a 'subterranean room' and elsewhere in the tunnel on the U.S. side, authorities said.
Mexican officials seized four tons of pot at a ranch in northern Mexico, bringing the total haul to more than 20 tons.
The discovery of the cross-border tunnel earlier this month marked one of the largest marijuana seizures in the United States, with agents confiscating 20 tons of marijuana they said was smuggled through the underground passage.
One of the warehouses involved in the tunnel discovered this week is only a half-block away. Several sophisticated tunnels have ended in San Diego warehouses.
Unfilled tunnels a weak link at border
Key points are plugged in U.S. and Mexico, but smugglers may still try to reuse the passages
By Richard Marosi
Times Staff Writer
January 30, 2007
SAN DIEGO — Seven of the largest tunnels discovered under the U.S.-Mexico border in recent years have yet to be filled in, authorities said, raising concerns because smugglers have tried to reuse such passages before.
Among the unfilled tunnels, created to ferry people and drugs, is the longest one yet found — extending nearly half a mile from San Diego to Tijuana. Nearby, another sophisticated passageway once known as the Taj Mahal of tunnels has been sitting unfilled for 13 years, authorities say.
Though concrete plugs usually close off the tunnels where they cross under the border and at main entrance and exit points, the areas in between remain largely intact. Filling the seven tunnels would cost about $2.7 million, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials. Accessing tunnels that run under private property is also a problem, as is a lack of coordination with Mexican authorities.
Mexican authorities have told their U.S. counterparts that they've filled their end of the tunnels. But U.S. officials express doubt, citing the high costs and examples of tunnels being compromised. The Mexican attorney general's office, which handles organized crime, did not respond to numerous requests for interviews.
In recent years nearly 50 tunnels have been discovered running under the border from San Diego to Arizona. Most are small, crudely constructed passages — called gopher holes — that are easily destroyed.
But filling the larger, more elaborate tunnels requires enormous amounts of material and expertise, especially because some were probably designed by mining engineers.
To prevent break-ins, authorities say they install motion sensors, which alert them to incursions.
But smugglers in some cases have been able to access existing tunnels by digging around the plugged entrance points, according to the U.S. Border Patrol and Immigration and Customs Enforcement, which heads the San Diego-based U.S. Border Tunnel Task Force.
In Nogales, Ariz., traffickers have used one tunnel three times over a four-year span. Tijuana smugglers were suspected of reusing a tunnel in 2004, one year after its discovery inside a house in Mexico. U.S. authorities have had to reinspect several other tunnels in response to suspicious activity or tips.
Because of overlapping jurisdictions among federal border agencies, the responsibility for subterranean work was unclear for years. The Border Patrol and the Drug Enforcement Administration each had some responsibility.
After the Department of Homeland Security was created in 2003, the responsibility for filling tunnels was assigned to one agency: Customs and Border Protection.
Authorities cite this streamlining as progress. But Customs and Border Protection has not filled any tunnels, and has capped only two since assuming control. Michael Friel, an agency spokesman, said the agency is trying to find money in its budget to complete the work. The 2007 budget for Customs and Border Protection is $7.8 billion.
Critics say the existence of so many unfilled tunnels poses a needless — and inexcusable — national security risk.
"I was shocked to learn that these tunnels haven't been filled in. They should be," U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) said in a statement. "The department should move, find money, and do it. This is a huge department with a huge budget. And if they don't have the money, they should tell us, and we will seek to get it in the emergency supplemental."
Among the unfilled passages:
• The so-called Grande Tunnel connecting warehouses in San Diego and Tijuana. Nearly half a mile long, the tunnel was discovered in January 2006 and attracted global media attention as well as groups of local and national politicians, who were given tours of its cave-like depths. The tunnel prompted Feinstein to propose legislation outlawing the construction of tunnels under the border.
• The 1,400-foot tunnel called the "Taj Mahal" because of its lighting system and reinforced concrete walls. The tunnel was discovered in 1993. Five years later, authorities suspected the passage had been reentered after 33 illegal immigrants were found covered in mud near the opening. A metal lid over the tunnel opening had been cut. Border Patrol agents say they never determined for sure if the passage was reused.
• Two long tunnels leading from Mexicali, Mexico, to a quiet residential area in Calexico, Calif. One of them, discovered in 2005, was equipped with a ventilation system, phone line and video surveillance equipment.
It isn't cost alone that can keep tunnels unfilled. Owners of private property also can slow the process. In 2002, after a tunnel was discovered running under part of his property in eastern San Diego County, David Field, a San Diego building inspector, feuded with the DEA over how to fill the quarter-mile-long passage. The DEA wanted to use a concrete-soil mix. Field, for environmental reasons, said he wanted the portion under his land filled only with dirt.
The tunnel featured a battery-operated cart on rails and was used to ferry what may have been tons of drugs over a 10-year period, according to authorities.
In 2002, the DEA sent Field a letter saying that drug traffickers would probably reuse the tunnel if it wasn't completely closed off and threatened to seize Field's property if the tunnel was compromised. Field said the letter surprised him because he knew the agency had never filled the Taj Mahal tunnel found in 1993.
"I said that tunnel is still open…. So how could this be a national emergency?" Field said.
Authorities say they have had to check the tunnel twice to investigate tips that it had been reopened, but have found no evidence.
Smugglers can be determined about reclaiming their tunnels. Take the case of the little light-blue house in Nogales. The vacant building with barred windows is at 438 W. International St., right across the street from the border, where a 20-foot fence provides a formidable above-ground barrier.
Several years ago, smugglers, starting from a drainage canal in Mexico, dug under the border fence, under International Street, and under the yard, to a front room in the house. Wooden slats and carpeting covered the opening, said Agent Mario Cano, a U.S. Border Patrol spokesman.
In December 2001, U.S. authorities discovered the 85-foot tunnel — equipped with a rail and cart system — and plugged it. But the smugglers soon dug around the cap at the border and found their way back to the tunnel, Cano said.
Diggers used about 15 feet of that tunnel, then branched off and burrowed an additional 40 feet. They surfaced near the house's driveway and covered the new opening with trash cans. In March 2002, that opening was discovered and sealed, Cano said.
Smugglers went to work again, this time using portions of the first and second tunnel before branching off to surface in another area of the yard, where they covered their latest opening with a tarp. That branch and its opening were discovered in October 2005.
Digging a new route
This month, authorities returned to the house again. This time, two men were digging a new route, starting inside the home, Cano said. They had progressed only 15 feet, Cano said, but may have intended to link up again with one of the existing tunnels under the property.
None of the passages have been filled, Cano said, although he believes portions may have collapsed because of heavy rains. Even if the tunnels were filled, he said, the problem might not go away.
That's because smugglers have used the concrete fill to make support walls and ceilings for new tunnels, he said. The filled-in passages also serve as markers, guiding crews to new areas where they want to go below ground.
The tunnel diggers' determination has bedeviled U.S. authorities, who have teamed with structural and civil engineers and geologists to devise the best ways to close tunnels. They've experimented with a type of concrete that will cave in if smugglers use it for support.
The cost to close the unfilled tunnels ranges from $200,000 to $700,000.
But addressing the problem here solves only part of the problem because some tunnels extend hundreds of feet into Mexico, where U.S. authorities have no control.
Though Mexican authorities promise to fill tunnels, it's hard to know if they've followed through, said Assistant Special Agent in Charge Frank Marwood, who heads the U.S. Tunnel Task Force.
Mexican authorities have occasionally permitted their U.S. counterparts to inspect tunnels for suspicious activity, including one time when a corpse was discovered on the Mexican side. But it's not routine.
In 2004, smugglers in Tijuana are believed to have reused a tunnel that Mexican authorities said they had filled. The smugglers broke into a tunnel discovered a year earlier and formed a new tunnel heading toward a parking lot near the San Ysidro Port of Entry, U.S. authorities said.
The tunnel has since been filled in on the U.S. side, but the status of the Mexican side is unknown.
Corruption in Mexican border agencies complicates matters. Last year, two Mexican customs officers were arrested on suspicion of being involved in the construction of a tunnel near the San Ysidro Port of Entry.
U.S. authorities also believe Mexico can't afford to fill tunnels. If so, the U.S. should provide assistance, some say. "It's a binational security breach, and I think the way to handle it is by a binational effort," Marwood said.
"If they're not filled in, [smugglers] just branch out at one end or another
Lou Dobbs Tonight
Monday, September 28, 2009
And T.J. BONNER, president of the National Border Patrol Council, will weigh in on the federal government’s decision to pull nearly 400 agents from the U.S.-Mexican border. As always, Lou will take your calls to discuss the issues that matter most-and to get your thoughts on where America is headed.
LOS ANGELES TIMES
FORBES NAMES MEXICAN DRUG LORD “WORLD’S MOST POWERFUL PEOPLE”....
So, tell me. Why does Obama and the La Raza dems, Reid, Boxer, Feinstein, Pelosi, Lofgren, and virtually every LA RAZA DEM, want our borders open and undefended against NARCOmex?
November 13, 2009 | 12:01 pm
MEXICO CITY — Mexico decried Forbes magazine’s decision to name the country’s most-wanted drug lord to its “World’s Most Powerful People,” calling it an insult to the government’s bloody struggle against drug cartels.
A spokesman for the Interior Department — which oversees domestic security — described the listing of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman as No. 41 of the 67 most powerful people as “a justification of crime.”
“(This) is a mockery of the struggle the government is waging against organized crime,” Luis Estrada said. “This not only goes against the efforts of the Mexican government, but the international fight to eliminate mafias and organized crime.”
Nearly 14,000 people have died in drug-related violence in Mexico since President Felipe Calderon launched an offensive against drug cartels in late 2006.
Some residents in the border city of Ciudad Juarez — which has suffered the highest rate of drug violence, with about 2,000 killings this year — also expressed outrage.
“I think this is bad, because the news media are putting a drug trafficker above people who have legitimate businesses,” said Josefina Ramirez, a Ciudad Juarez accountant.
Guzman is even considered more powerful than Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez — No. 67 — and France’s Nicolas Sarkozy — No. 56 — according to Forbes magazine’s list of the 67 “World’s Most Powerful People.” Guzman was just below Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
Another Mexican — telecom magnate Carlos Slim Helu, who Forbes listed as the world’s third-richest man — was named No. 6 on the most-powerful list, just five steps behind No. 1, President Barack Obama.
Guzman’s vast drug-trafficking empire is worth an estimated $1 billion, according to Forbes. Yet unlike other, flashier smugglers, few details are known about the Sinaloa cartel boss and the actual power he wields inside his gang.
He escaped prison by hiding in a laundry truck nearly a decade ago, and his legend and fortune seem to grow with each passing day he eludes capture.
The Sinaloa cartel violently seized lucrative drug routes from rivals and built sophisticated tunnels under the U.S. border to move its loads. Mexican officials blame Guzman’s cartel for much of the country’s staggering bloodshed.
“Of course he’s influential, rich and powerful, but he has cost so many lives, so many youths,” said Gabriela Lopez, a 25-year-old businesswoman in Culiacan, the capital of Sinaloa. “I wish they would make a list pointing out that as well.”
Forbes said Guzman’s ranking was intended to spark conversation, and asked readers: “Do despicable criminals like billionaire Mexican drug lord Joaquin Guzman (No. 41) belong on this list at all?”
Last March, Mexican officials also criticized Forbes’ decision to include Guzman on its list of the world’s billionaires.
Without explicitly naming the publication, Calderon said at the time that “magazines are not only attacking and lying about the situation in Mexico but are also praising criminals.”
12 arrested after authorities discover tunnel from Mexico into San Diego
December 2, 2009 | 3:06 pm
Mexican authorities discovered a large cross-border tunnel today and arrested more than a dozen men inside the passageway that extended about 860 feet into San Diego, U.S. authorities said.
The tunnel, which was not complete, featured lighting, electrical and ventilation systems, and an elevator to move materials and workers to depths reaching 100 feet, authorities said. They estimate it was under construction for about two years in a warehouse district just west of the Otay Mesa Port of Entry.
Mexican authorities in Tijuana were acting on information provided by the San Diego Tunnel Task Force, which includes agents from Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Drug Enforcement Administration.
It was the latest in a series of tunnel discoveries in recent weeks under the California-Mexico border. The passageways are used by Mexican organized crime groups to ferry drugs into the U.S.
-- Richard Marosi in San Diego
Four men arrested while digging tunnel across U.S.-Mexico border
November 13, 2009
Four men were arrested in Baja California while digging a tunnel across the U.S.-Mexico border, officials said today.
The men were using heavy machinery to bore through the ground and had dug down more than 21 feet when the Baja State Police arrested them Thursday night in Mexicali, Mexico.
An anonymous tip led the officers to the group.
Baja police are valuing the heavy equipment at more than $75,000.
Police released the names of three of the four men: Rigoberto Gaspar Méndez, 27, and Carlos Gáspar Méndez, 18, of Chihuahua; and Roberto Carlos Osuna Villegas, 36, of Sinaloa.
“Eight men were arrested in Mexicali after police there found the 150-yard-long tunnel, which ended just short of the U.S. border.”
MEXICO UNDER SIEGE
Two held in Mexico in killings of 24
The suspects, a police commander and a security firm owner, are detained in connection with the discovery last month of bodies piled in a park near Mexico City.
By Ken Ellingwood
Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
October 17, 2008
Mexican authorities Thursday said they had arrested two suspects in the slayings of 24 men whose bodies were discovered in a wooded area outside Mexico City last month.
Federal prosecutors said one of the suspects is a municipal police commander in the state of Mexico, which surrounds the capital on three sides. The other, identified as having led the planning for the killings, runs a security company in the same state, officials said.
Authorities said the latter suspect has links to drug traffickers in the northern state of Sinaloa.
The bodies were found Sept. 12 in a forested park, known as La Marquesa, that is popular with hikers and other day-trippers from Mexico City. The mass killing bore signs of the drug-related violence that has racked the country, leaving more than 3,500 people dead nationwide this year, according to unofficial Mexican news media tallies.
But authorities have not provided details about a possible motive. A number of the dead were identified as brick masons from various Mexican states.
The newspaper El Universal has reported that some of the men may have been involved in building a drug-smuggling tunnel meant to span the border in the Baja California city of Mexicali. The newspaper, citing unidentified sources, said the men were killed after authorities found out about the tunnel project.
Eight men were arrested in Mexicali after police there found the 150-yard-long tunnel, which ended just short of the U.S. border.
In a statement, the attorney general's office said suspect Raul Villa Ortega, the security company owner, worked for a Sinaloa drug figure linked to traffickers known as the Beltran Leyvas. Villa, the suspected mastermind, was armed when the two were arrested Wednesday, authorities said.
The second suspect, Antonio Ramirez Cervantes, is a police commander in the town of Huixquilucan, prosecutors said.
The pile of bodies was among the most grisly developments in what has been a remarkably violent year, as a government crackdown against drug traffickers has stoked bloody feuds among gangs over control of smuggling routes and access to local markets.
In other developments, a Mexican soldier and four suspected hit men were reported dead after a gun battle late Wednesday in Tijuana, Mexican news reports said.
The border city has been the site of violent clashes, mostly between rival factions of the once-powerful Arellano Felix drug gang.
In the northern city of Monterrey, officials at the U.S. Consulate suspended visa services after gunshots apparently were fired nearby. Last weekend, gunmen fired shots at the consulate and hurled a grenade that didn't explode. No one was hurt in either incident.
Obama soft on illegals enforcement
Arrests of illegal immigrant workers have dropped precipitously under President Obama, according to figures released Wednesday. Criminal arrests, administrative arrests, indictments and convictions of illegal immigrants at work sites all fell by more than 50 percent from fiscal 2008 to fiscal 2009.
The figures show that Mr. Obama has made good on his pledge to shift enforcement away from going after illegal immigrant workers themselves - but at the expense of Americans' jobs, said Rep. Lamar Smith of Texas, the Republican who compiled the numbers from the Department of Homeland Security's U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE). Mr. Smith, the top Republican on the House Judiciary Committee, said a period of economic turmoil is the wrong time to be cutting enforcement and letting illegal immigrants take jobs that Americans otherwise would hold.
JOKES ON US!
NAPOLITANO PRONOUNCES U.S. BORDER “MORE” SECURE NOW….
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration has met many of the border security benchmarks Congress set in 2007 as a prerequisite to immigration reform and now it's time to change the law, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said Friday.
Napolitano, designated by President Barack Obama to lead the administration's immigration reform efforts, said many members of Congress had said they could support immigration reform, but only after border security improved, Napolitano said.
"Fast forward to today, and many of the benchmarks these members of Congress set in 2007 have been met," she said in a speech to the Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank.
She cited construction of 600 miles of border fence and the hiring of more than 20,000 Border Patrol agents. Illegal immigration has also fallen sharply because of better enforcement and the economy.