Tunnel robots help US war on drugs

2014-01-15 08:33
 US Immigration and Customs Enforcement shows agents in a tunnel designed to smuggle drugs from Tijuana, Mexico, to San Diego. (Paul Caffrey, AP)

US Immigration and Customs Enforcement shows agents in a tunnel designed to smuggle drugs from Tijuana, Mexico, to San Diego. (Paul Caffrey, AP)

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Nogales - The US Border Patrol has unveiled one of its weapons in the war on drugs.

The agency recently purchased three wireless camera-equipped robots that let border agents remotely navigate the tunnels and storm drainage systems that smugglers use to sneak drugs, guns and people across the border.

Dozens of crude tunnels have been discovered in the area over the years.

Agents held a demonstration of the devices on Tuesday in the southern Arizona border city of Nogales.

The agency is using the devices to keep agents out of harm's way. Many tunnels lack proper ventilation, are poorly built and are prone to collapsing.

The 5.4kg robots also let agents navigate an underground labyrinth in a fraction of the time it would take an agent to explore the tunnel.
- AP
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