Rare view of tunnels under border wall


FRONT.”>>Reporter: FOR YEARS THE VIGILANCE ALONG THE SOUTHERN BORDER HAS BEEN GROWING. BORDER AGENTS KRIZ CROSSING THE REMOTE TERRAINS AND URBAN STREETS, GROUND SCENTERS AND HIGH POWERED CAMERAS KEEPING CONSTANT WATCH. NOW SMUGGLERS GO WHERE THE CAMERAS AND EYES CAN’T SEE THEM. WE ARE IN A TUNNEL UNDERNEATH OTAY MESA, CALIFORNIA, SOUTH OF SAN DIEGO ON THE BORDER WITH TIJUANA, MEXICO. THIS IS A TUNNEL THAT STRETCHED ABOUT 7650 FEET FROM TIJUANA INTO A WAREHOUSE OR WOULD HAVE STRETCHED INTO A WAREHOUSE ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE BORDER AND WE’RE ABOUT 70 FEET UNDERGROUND RIGHT NOW.>>THAT’S ONE OF THE DEEPER TUNNELS WE’VE FOUND.>>Reporter: LANCE IS PART OF A SPECIALIZED TEAM OF BORDER PATROL AGENTS KNOWN AS THE TUNNEL RATS. THEY WORK UNDERGROUND, 1/2 GAITING NEWLY DISCOVERED TUNNELS AND SEWER SYSTEMS.>>Reporter: DO YOU THINK THESE TUNNELS STARTED APPEARING AS A RESPONSE — AS MORE FENCING WENT UP IN THIS AREA?>>OH, I’M SURE IT PROBABLY DID. BUT WE’RE ALSO STILL TALKING THERE’S A LOT OF STUFF THEY HAVE TO MOVE.>>Reporter: HOMELAND SECURITY OFFICIALS SAY IN THE LAST TEN YEARS NEARLY 30 TUNNELS HAVE BEEN DISCOVERED JUST IN THE SAN DIEGO AREA ALONE.>>THEY WILL CONTINUE TO GO ON BETWEEN THE U.S. AND MEXICAN BORDER, YES, IT WILL CONTINUE. THERE’S A WAY THAT THESE DRUG TRAFFICKING ORGANIZATIONS CAN STAY UNDETECTED AND IT’S BY TUNNELING, THEY WILL.>>Reporter: THIS IS USUALLY A HIGH-DOLLAR, HIGH, YOU KNOW, RISK/REWARD ENTERPRISE.>>IT’S A LOT OF STUFF THAT THEY’VE GOT TO MOVE IN A RELATIVELY SHORT AMOUNT OF TIME.>>Reporter: HE SAYS THE TUNNELS ARE USED TO MOVE LARGE PACKS OF MARIJUANA AND COCAINE AND OFTEN LINED WITH ELECTRICAL POWER AND VENTILATION.>>THIS ONE HAD A RAIL SYSTEM IN IT.>>Reporter: HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO BUILD SOMETHING LIKE THIS?>>DEPEND ONG THE RESILIENCY OF THE DIGGING CREW, THEY CAN GO REALLY FAST REALLY FAR.>>IS IT BY HAND, BY SHOVEL?>>BASICALLY ALMOST EXCLUSIVELY BY HAND WITH POWER TOOLS.>>Reporter: WHEN THESE THINGS STARTED POPPING UP, WHAT WAS YOUR REACTION TO THAT?>>THE IMAGINATION OF PEOPLE TRYING TO ILLICITLY COME NORTH IS SOMETHING I DON’T TRY TO SECOND-GUESS. I MEAN, IT IS — THEY’RE INCREDIBLE, SOME OF THE METHODS THEY USE.>>Reporter: FIGHTING THIS INGENUITY BELOW GROUND HAS FUNDAMENTALLY CHANGED LIFE ON THE BORDER ABOVE GROUND. ALYCIA AND CHRIS MARTIN SPEND THEIR LIVES STRADDLING BOTH SIDES OF THE BORDER. THEY OWN ORGANIC FARMS IN MEXICO AND A PRODUCE DISTRIBUTION BUSINESS AND ONE OF THE MOST UNIQUE RESTAURANTS IN MEXICO. THE RESTAURANT IS CALLED THE ROCK.>>YES, IT IS. YEAH. LA ROCA.>>Reporter: BECAUSE YOUR UNCLE BUILT THIS INTO THE SIDE OF THIS MOUNTAIN.>>THAT’S ME.>>Reporter: AS A CHILD SHE REMEMBERS FREELY CROSSING THE BORDER INTO MEXICO.>>THIS IS OUR FARM. WE’D COME DOWN IN OUR BATHING SUITS AS KIDS, GET THE POPSICLE, GET THE ICE CREAM AND GO BACK.>>Reporter: WITH IMMIGRATION CONTROLS TIGHTENING ON THE U.S. SIDE AND THE FEAR OF CARTEL VIOLENCE, THE RESTAURANT HAS STRUGGLED TO KEEP ITS DOORS OPEN.>>IT WAS ALL OF A SUDDEN SOMEBODY CAME IN AND HIT THE LIGHT SWITCH AND THERE WAS NOBODY. THERE WAS NOBODY IN TOWN. THERE WAS NOBODY ON THE STREET.>>THEY’RE DIFFICULT PROBLEMS TO SOLVE, THROWING UP TRADE BARRIERS, PUTTING UP A WALL. THERE’S SUCH HARSH APPROACHES TO THE PROBLEMS. ONCE AGAIN YOU’RE TREATING A SYMPTOM AND YOU’RE NOT GOING AFTER THE ROOT CAUSE OF THE PROBLEM.>>Reporter: PERHAPS NO PLACE SYMBOLIZES THE IMPACT OF TIGHTENED BORDER SECURITY QUITE LIKE THIS PLACE. THIS IS ONE OF THE SMALLEST LEGAL BORDER CHECKPOINTS YOU’RE GOING TO FIND. THIS IS THE CROSSING IN BIG BEN NATIONAL PARK. LITERALLY TWO LITTLE BOATS AND A GUY WHO ROWS YOU ACROSS. IT’S A SMALL TOWN OF 200 PEOPLE. ITS LIFELINE IS THE TOURISTS THAT VENTURE ACROSS THE RIO GRAND FOR THE TAMA LAYS AT JOSE FALCON’S RESTAURANT.>>IT’S VERY NICE TO LIVE HERE.>>Reporter: LILIA RUNS THE RESTAURANT HER FATHER OPENED IN 1973, BUT AFTER 9/11, THE UNITED STATES CLOSED THE BORDER CROSSING AND THE TOWN SLOWLY STARTED DYING. FALCONS HAD TO CLOSE. THE ENTRY POINT REOPENED ALMOST FOUR YEARS AGO AND FALCON’S IS BACK. BUT LILIA FALCON WORRIES ABOUT DONALD TRUMP’S CRACKDOWN ON IMMIGRATION AND BORDER SECURITY. IF THAT BORDER CROSSING GOES — >>THEN THE TOWN AGAIN WILL BE DEAD AGAIN. IT WOULD BE HARD, VERY HARD AGAIN. WE WOULDN’T LIKE TO GO THROUGH IT AGAIN.>>Reporter: IT’S THE CHANC

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