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Pictures | Tue Jun 5, 2018 | 2:15pm EDT

Smuggling tunnel on U.S.-Mexico border

A U.S. Customs and Border Patrol federal officer, who is part of the San Diego Sector Confined Space Entry Team, inspects a tunnel under the U.S.-Mexico border in San Diego, California, June 4, 2018. 


REUTERS/Mike Blake

A U.S. Customs and Border Patrol federal officer, who is part of the San Diego Sector Confined Space Entry Team, inspects a tunnel under the U.S.-Mexico border in San Diego, California, June 4, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Blake

A U.S. Customs and Border Patrol federal officer, who is part of the San Diego Sector Confined Space Entry Team, inspects a tunnel under the U.S.-Mexico border in San Diego, California, June 4, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Blake
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U.S. Border Patrol Operations Officer Lance LeNoir of the Confined Space Entry Team climbs out of a tunnel. Shut down twice before, the network was apparently used for illegal immigration. The original tunnel was found in 2013. The tunnel was found and remediated/filled on the north side of the border. 


REUTERS/Mike Blake

U.S. Border Patrol Operations Officer Lance LeNoir of the Confined Space Entry Team climbs out of a tunnel. Shut down twice before, the network was apparently used for illegal immigration. The original tunnel was found in 2013. The tunnel was found...more

U.S. Border Patrol Operations Officer Lance LeNoir of the Confined Space Entry Team climbs out of a tunnel. Shut down twice before, the network was apparently used for illegal immigration. The original tunnel was found in 2013. The tunnel was found and remediated/filled on the north side of the border. REUTERS/Mike Blake
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An illegal smuggling tunnel, now used for training federal officers, is seen under the border between Mexico and the United States. Then in 2017, the tunnel was tapped into again from the south side and branched off of the original into the north side. On that second occasion, agents detained about 30 people including Mexican and Chinese nationals but no drugs were found.

REUTERS/Mike Blake

An illegal smuggling tunnel, now used for training federal officers, is seen under the border between Mexico and the United States. Then in 2017, the tunnel was tapped into again from the south side and branched off of the original into the north...more

An illegal smuggling tunnel, now used for training federal officers, is seen under the border between Mexico and the United States. Then in 2017, the tunnel was tapped into again from the south side and branched off of the original into the north side. On that second occasion, agents detained about 30 people including Mexican and Chinese nationals but no drugs were found. REUTERS/Mike Blake
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Operations Officer Lance LeNoir climbs down into a tunnel. The tunnel began in a building in Tijuana, more than 300 feet south of the U.S.- Mexico border and ran past a fence at the Otay Mesa Port of Entry. Subterranean tunnels found in the area are most commonly used for drug smuggling, according to the Customs and Border Patrol.


REUTERS/Mike Blake

Operations Officer Lance LeNoir climbs down into a tunnel. The tunnel began in a building in Tijuana, more than 300 feet south of the U.S.- Mexico border and ran past a fence at the Otay Mesa Port of Entry. Subterranean tunnels found in the area are...more

Operations Officer Lance LeNoir climbs down into a tunnel. The tunnel began in a building in Tijuana, more than 300 feet south of the U.S.- Mexico border and ran past a fence at the Otay Mesa Port of Entry. Subterranean tunnels found in the area are most commonly used for drug smuggling, according to the Customs and Border Patrol. REUTERS/Mike Blake
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Operations Officer Lance LeNoir inspects a tunnel. In 2016, federal agents said they seized a ton of cocaine and seven tons of marijuana smuggled through a tunnel in the same area that stretched a half mile beneath the border, which then was the longest one yet unearthed in California, Reuters previously reported.

REUTERS/Mike Blake

Operations Officer Lance LeNoir inspects a tunnel. In 2016, federal agents said they seized a ton of cocaine and seven tons of marijuana smuggled through a tunnel in the same area that stretched a half mile beneath the border, which then was the...more

Operations Officer Lance LeNoir inspects a tunnel. In 2016, federal agents said they seized a ton of cocaine and seven tons of marijuana smuggled through a tunnel in the same area that stretched a half mile beneath the border, which then was the longest one yet unearthed in California, Reuters previously reported. REUTERS/Mike Blake
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Operations Officer Lance LeNoir crawls through a tunnel that is now used for training. "We have ventilation, electrical, tools, rail systems, transport mechanisms of some sort in here, that's what gives it its sophisticated moniker. However, it it not to be construed with sophisticated engineering," said LeNoir.

REUTERS/Mike Blake

Operations Officer Lance LeNoir crawls through a tunnel that is now used for training. "We have ventilation, electrical, tools, rail systems, transport mechanisms of some sort in here, that's what gives it its sophisticated moniker. However, it it...more

Operations Officer Lance LeNoir crawls through a tunnel that is now used for training. "We have ventilation, electrical, tools, rail systems, transport mechanisms of some sort in here, that's what gives it its sophisticated moniker. However, it it not to be construed with sophisticated engineering," said LeNoir. REUTERS/Mike Blake
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Operations Officer Lance LeNoir climbs out of a tunnel. "In San Diego, the average distance on these tunnels is anywhere from 1,500 all the way up to about 3,000 feet. They're sophisticated in that regard just based upon distance alone. And what you see is what we typically encounter here in San Diego, this type of particular geology, these types of tools, this type of ventilation system and this type of shoddy construction," said LeNoir.


REUTERS/Mike Blake

Operations Officer Lance LeNoir climbs out of a tunnel. "In San Diego, the average distance on these tunnels is anywhere from 1,500 all the way up to about 3,000 feet. They're sophisticated in that regard just based upon distance alone. And what you...more

Operations Officer Lance LeNoir climbs out of a tunnel. "In San Diego, the average distance on these tunnels is anywhere from 1,500 all the way up to about 3,000 feet. They're sophisticated in that regard just based upon distance alone. And what you see is what we typically encounter here in San Diego, this type of particular geology, these types of tools, this type of ventilation system and this type of shoddy construction," said LeNoir. REUTERS/Mike Blake
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A U.S. Customs and Border Patrol federal officer inspects a tunnel. "Discovering these types of voids underground is a very tricky problem," said LeNoir. "It's specific to the area in which the threat resides. I could find a widget that works out here and finds this particular tunnel in here but that doesn't really necessarily mean that I can find it in Tucson which has another propensity for tunnels as well. So, geology, electromagnetic interference, a radio, all that stuff in there, surface clutter, all that goes in there and each site has its own particular challenges that one system is very difficult to consider all those problems and try to solve it."

REUTERS/Mike Blake

A U.S. Customs and Border Patrol federal officer inspects a tunnel. "Discovering these types of voids underground is a very tricky problem," said LeNoir. "It's specific to the area in which the threat resides. I could find a widget that works out...more

A U.S. Customs and Border Patrol federal officer inspects a tunnel. "Discovering these types of voids underground is a very tricky problem," said LeNoir. "It's specific to the area in which the threat resides. I could find a widget that works out here and finds this particular tunnel in here but that doesn't really necessarily mean that I can find it in Tucson which has another propensity for tunnels as well. So, geology, electromagnetic interference, a radio, all that stuff in there, surface clutter, all that goes in there and each site has its own particular challenges that one system is very difficult to consider all those problems and try to solve it." REUTERS/Mike Blake
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A tunnel, now used for training federal officers, is seen under the border between Mexico and the United States. "There's a demand on this side, there's a supply on the south side, so you've go that basic financial things checked off," said LeNoir. "You have infrastructure to the south and infrastructure to the north and a very robust commercial network in between, alright? So, that's out high tunnel threat area. Wherever there's infrastructure to the south, and by that I mean commercial warehouses, homes, yards or whatever, anywhere to get from point A to point B in stealth, put it in a truck and then blend in with the 80,000 other vehicles that we see on a daily basis out here."

REUTERS/Mike Blake

A tunnel, now used for training federal officers, is seen under the border between Mexico and the United States. "There's a demand on this side, there's a supply on the south side, so you've go that basic financial things checked off," said LeNoir....more

A tunnel, now used for training federal officers, is seen under the border between Mexico and the United States. "There's a demand on this side, there's a supply on the south side, so you've go that basic financial things checked off," said LeNoir. "You have infrastructure to the south and infrastructure to the north and a very robust commercial network in between, alright? So, that's out high tunnel threat area. Wherever there's infrastructure to the south, and by that I mean commercial warehouses, homes, yards or whatever, anywhere to get from point A to point B in stealth, put it in a truck and then blend in with the 80,000 other vehicles that we see on a daily basis out here." REUTERS/Mike Blake
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Operations Officer Lance LeNoir climbs down into a tunnel. REUTERS/Mike Blake

Operations Officer Lance LeNoir climbs down into a tunnel. REUTERS/Mike Blake

Operations Officer Lance LeNoir climbs down into a tunnel. REUTERS/Mike Blake
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A U.S. Customs and Border Patrol federal officer looks down into an illegal smuggling tunnel. REUTERS/Mike Blake

A U.S. Customs and Border Patrol federal officer looks down into an illegal smuggling tunnel. REUTERS/Mike Blake

A U.S. Customs and Border Patrol federal officer looks down into an illegal smuggling tunnel. REUTERS/Mike Blake
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