Extensive ‘Narco-Tunnel’ Discovered on US-Mexico Border
Authorities from the U.S. have arrested six individuals in connection with a “narco-tunnel” that was discovered on the U.S.-Mexico border. The tunnel was “equipped with a rail track, electricity and ventilation system, the U.S. Department of Justice said,” according to an article in Reuters. The tunnel ran between Tijuana, Mexico, and a warehouse in San Diego, California, just 300 feet from the Mexican border.
The six people arrested are accused of intending to distribute cocaine, methamphetamine, and heroin, among other notable offenses. The tunnel is thought to run more than 1750 feet and “was also fitted out with reinforced walls.”
Many of the 100 hundred tunnels that have been discovered since 1993 belong to the Sinaloa cartel, which was led by Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman for years. As of now, the identities of the six people arrested have not been released publicly.
“There is no more light at the end of this narco-tunnel,” said U.S. Attorney Randy Grossman. “We will take down every subterranean smuggling route we find to keep illicit drugs from reaching our streets and destroying our families and communities.” According to the Baja California attorney general’s office, which was notified about the tunnel this past Sunday, the tunnel that was uncovered was one of the largest in the area.
The Sinaloa cartel has been operating globally since the mid-1980s, with headquarters inside Mexico’s “Golden Triangle,” comprised of Sinaloa, Durango, and Chihuahua, a region known for its production of opium and marijuana.
As of 2021, the Sinaloa cartel was the largest in Mexico. Since El Chapo’s most recent arrest in 2016, the Sinaloa cartel has been led by Ismael Zambada “El Mayo” García, as well as El Chapo’s sons, Alfredo Guzmán Salazar, Ovidio Guzmán López and Ivan Archivaldo Guzmán Salazar.
Known for its unceasing brutality, the Sinaloa cartel is responsible for thousands of gruesome deaths around the world. In the past, authorities have discovered everything from chainsaw beheadings to over 300 bodies dissolved in acid.
Federal and international efforts to blunt the cartel’s activity have mostly been in vain, with arrests and busts only making room for other divisions of the Sinaloa cartel to expand in territory and reach.
Rivalries, both within the Sinaloa cartel and with other cartels, like the Jalisco New Generation Cartel, are also a major concern for authorities. During the first two months of 2021, an estimated 11,000 people were displaced due to cartel-related conflicts and violence in Colombia alone.