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Tag: Arizona

Feds Find ‘Most Sophisticated Tunnel in U.S. History’ at Border with Mexico

Inside the unfinished tunnel, via ICE.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The discovery shocked federal agents: An unfinished tunnel that ran from San Louis, Ariz., to a Mexican neighborhood featured a ventilation system, electrical wiring, water lines, a rail system and extensive reinforcement.

“This appears to be the most sophisticated tunnel in U.S. history, and certainly the most sophisticated I’ve seen in my career,” Carl E. Landrum, acting chief patrol agent with the Border Patrol’s Yuma sector, said, The Associated Press reports.

Discovered by Homeland Security Investigations in late July, officials believe it was intended for smuggling.

The tunnel was 3 feet wide and 4 feet high.

Excavation work on the tunnel, via ICE.

FBI Raids California Home of YouTube Celebrity Following a Mall Riot in Arizona

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The FBI raided the California home of YouTube celebrity Jake Paul on Thursday in connection with a riot at an Arizona shopping mall, The Los Angeles Times reports.

Agents were seen removing firearms from the home.

The FBI also served search warrants in Nevada and Arizona.

“The FBI is executing a federal search warrant at a residence in Calabasas in connection with an ongoing investigation,” an FBI representative said in a statement. “The affidavit in support of the search warrant has been sealed by a judge and I am, therefore, prohibited from commenting as to the nature of the investigation. No arrests are planned.”

Paul was charged with misdemeanors in connection with the riot, but police are dismissing the
case and cooperating with the FBI.

FBI Arrests U.S. Woman Accused of Attempting to Provide Material Support to al-Qaeda

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A U.S. woman has been arrested on allegations of attempting to provide material support to al-Qaeda, the Justice Department announced.

The FBI on Wednesday arrested Jill Marie Jones at the Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport, where federal authorities say she planned to board a flight to Turkey to join the terrorist group in Afghanistan.

Two undercover FBI agents, including one who posed as a member of al-Qaeda, were communicating with Jones, who said she planned to send money to help al Qaeda buy scopes for rifles that would be used to kill American soldiers. She sent the undercover FBI agent a $500 gift card in May 2020, the DOJ says.

During the communications, Jones said she planned to travel overseas to assist al Qaeda, according to the DOJ.

Secret Service Agents Helping Set Up Pence Trip to Arizona Have Suspected Coronavirus Infections

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Multiple Secret Service agents who were planning Vice President Pence’s trip to Arizona have tested positive for the coronavirus or were showing signs of being infected.

The suspected infections prompted Pence to postpone his trip to Phoenix on Tuesday, The Washington Post reports.

The Secret Service asked Pence’s staff to postpone the trip to Wednesday to give the agency more time to replace eight to 10 agents with suspected infections.

It was the second time in two weeks that Secret Service agents working on campaign events were impacted by COVID-19. At least three Secret Service employees tested positive for the coronavirus after helping set up President Trump’s rally on June 20.

A Pence spokesperson declined to comment on the delay.

“Instead of highlighting Vice President Pence’s concerted effort with Task Force members to visit and support states with new cases, The Washington Post is choosing to use its pages to report on a story of little use to every day Americans attempting to learn more about how coronavirus affects them or the Administration’s response efforts,” Pence spokesman Devin O’Malley said in a statement.

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Off-Duty Border Patrol Agent Foils Robbery, Carjacking at Mall in Tucson, Arizona

Photo via Border Patrol

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

An off-duty Border Patrol agent foiled a robbery and carjacking outside of a mall in Tucson, Ariz.

The agent was in the parking lot of the Park Place Mall when he heard a woman shouting for help. The agent saw four suspects trying to steal a woman’s vehicle and purse.

When the agent confronted the suspect and ordered them to stop, they fled on foot, CBP said in a news release.

Tucson Police Department is investigating.

The victim and agent provided the department with details about the suspects.

Man Arrested After Shooting at FBI’s Phoenix Field Office

FBI’s Phoenix Field Office, via FBI.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A man has been arrested after authorities say he shot at the FBI’s Phoenix Field Office on Monday.

According to the FBI, the man approached the building and then fired his weapon at an employee who was exiting at around 2 p.m,, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.

The FBI and Phoenix Police Department tracked down the man, who has not been identified, on Interstate 17 and arrested him without incident.

The motive for the shooting wasn’t immediately clear.

No one was injured.

Border Patrol Reverts to Quick Deportations to Protect Agents from Coronavirus

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The U.S. Border Patrol in Arizona is reverting to quick deportations to protect agents from the coronavirus.

In the past, many people who illegally crossed the border were incarcerated and prosecuted.

Now, agents are deporting undocumented immigrants in “a matter of minutes,” Border Patrol spokesman Daniel Hernandez tells Arizona Public Media.

Instead of arresting migrants, they receive masks and a background check in the field before they are returned to a port of entry and deported.

It wasn’t immediately clear who many people have been deported this way or whether any of the undocumented immigrants were infected with the coronavirus.

Coronavirus Fears Don’t Stop Construction of the Border Wall in Arizona

An existing wall at border of Mexico. Photo via Congress.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Construction on the wall on the Arizona border with Mexico has not stopped as the coronavirus outbreak spreads rapidly across the U.S.

Work crews are filling up motels, Airbnbs and mobile home camps in the town of Ajo, while nonessential construction has stopped in most of the country, The New York Times reports.

The theory is that the wall will prevent the spread of the virus from Mexico to the U.S., even though health experts are skeptical.

In the meantime, residents in Ajo are worried that the influx of workers make them more susceptive to the coronavirus.

“This administration’s priority is to get the wall done. The rest of us might as well be damned,” Ajo resident Maria Singleton told the Times.

According to an Army Corps of Engineers spokesman Raini Brunson, the agency is following “government and CDC guidelines” as construction increases.

“As the guidance changes, decisions will be made as to how contractor employees will be affected,” Brunson added.