SAN DIEGO - U.S. Border Patrol agents discovered a border tunnel Saturday they said was used to smuggle immigrants into the country.
Agents were alerted to the tunnel around 1:12 p.m. after they found 23 Chinese residents and seven Mexican residents who had been smuggled into the U.S. The 30 people, which included women and children, were placed in Border Patrol custody for questioning.
The agents searched the area and found a hole in the ground with a ladder inside. It appeared the tunnel's exit was north of a secondary fence near the Otay Mesa Port of Entry. A preliminary investigation also revealed the tunnel may be an extension of an unfinished one that was found and seized by Mexican authorities.
According to the agency, underground tunnels are more commonly used to smuggle narcotics into the country, but there are some cases where the holes are used for human smuggling.
The San Diego Tunnel Task Force, led by ICE, was investigating the case.