NOGALES, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Border Patrol Agents from the Tucson Sector Border Patrol uncovered a cross border tunnel near the DeConcini Port of Entry in Nogales, Arizona.
Agents assigned to the Nogales Border Patrol station were contacted by Mexican Authorities regarding a tunnel entrance located in Nogales, Sonora, Mexico.
The agents in cooperation with Mexican Authorities, investigated the tunnel and determined it traveled approximately 122 feet, was just over 2 feet wide, and 3 feet tall. The tunnel was found to be incomplete and appeared to be intended for a water basin just north of the international boundary fence. The tunnel penetrated the international boundary by less than one foot.
Transnational criminal organizations have recruited a wide range of techniques in an attempt to smuggle both humans and narcotics into the United States. Since the illicit first tunnel was discovered in Douglas, Arizona in 1990, illicit tunnels have led to the seizure of more than 17,500 lbs. of narcotics in Tucson Sector. Nogales, Arizona has seen the most illicit tunnel activity, accounting for 108 of the 114 cross border tunnels, mostly discovered within city limits.
However, in recent years, Tucson Sector has seen a dramatic decrease in illicit, underground tunnels. In fiscal year 2012, seven tunnels were discovered within Tucson Sector. This past year, only 3 tunnels were discovered. Much of this can be credited to the hard work and dedication of Tucson Sector Border Patrol Agents willingness to place themselves in hazardous conditions, defying dangerous elements in order to fortify the border.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials welcome assistance from the community. Citizens can report suspicious activity to the Border Patrol and remain anonymous by calling 1-877-872-7435 toll free. Contacting the Border Patrol to report illicit activity could result in saving someone's life.