One of the most sophisticated tunnels, designed to smuggle drugs from Tijuana, Mexico, to San Diego, has been discovered by US authorities.
The 35 foot tunnel is equipped with lighting, ventilation and an electric rail system and is about four feet high and three feet wide.
US Attorney Laura Duffy called the passage a "super tunnel" built by architects and engineers.
"The discovery of today's tunnel, which we call a super tunnel is the fifth super tunnel we have intercepted since 2010, and tunnel, like those we found in November 2011 were built by engineers and architects."
Authorities seized 8 1/2 tons of marijuana and 327 pounds of cocaine in connection with the discovery. Three men who authorities say worked as drivers were charged with possession of marijuana and cocaine with intent to distribute.
US Attorney Laura Duffy said they face minimum prison sentences of 10 years if convicted. The tunnel, which zigzags the length of nearly six football fields, links warehouses in Tijuana and San Diego's Otay Mesa industrial area. The area is filled with nondescript warehouses, making it easier to conceal trucks being loaded with drugs. Federal agents had the San Diego warehouse under surveillance after being tipped off by an informant. As US border security has increased on land, Mexican drug cartels have turned to ultralight aircraft, small fishing boats and tunnels. More than 75 underground passages have been discovered along the border since 2008, designed largely to smuggle marijuana. The tunnel is the eighth major passage discovered in San Diego since 2006, a period during which Mexico's Sinaloa cartel has solidified its hold on the prized smuggling corridor.
Sign up for our free e-mail list to see future vaticancatholic.com videos and articles.