Mexico Seizes Homemade Drug Submarine

Crew says it was forced to pilot makeshift vessel
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 17, 2008 9:00 AM CDT
Mexican navy sailors ride on top of a seized drug smuggling submarine as it was being towed off the coast of the Pacific resort city of Huatulco, Mexico, Wednesday July 16, 2008.    (Miguel Angel Tovar)
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(Newser) – Mexico's navy seized a homemade submarine carrying a drug shipment off the Pacific coast yesterday and arrested its four-man crew. The 30-foot makeshift vessel was detected heading north about 200 miles off the southern state of Oaxaca, and intercepted when it surfaced. The crew offered no resistance, and say drug lords forced them to make the journey.  

"We didn't know what was on board because we never saw it. It was sealed," said one of the four. Colombia's drug cartels have been known to use home-built submarines to smuggle large amounts of cocaine past US and Colombian patrol boats. Colombian authorities have discovered at least nine such vessels over the past three years, but this is the first time Mexico has captured one.