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Sneaking into the U.S.; Smuggling boat found on Ventura County coastline

Ventura County Sheriff's Office
An abandoned panga boat was found on the Rincon Wednesday. Authroties believe it was used to smuggle people into the United States from Mexico.

It's the second smugglers boat found on the South Coast in a week.

An abandoned boat being used by smugglers has been found on a South Coast beach.

Ventura County firefighters spotted the boat Wednesday along the coastline between Ventura and Carpinteria, near the Mobil Oil Pier. There were 16 life preservers in the boat. It’s believed the boat was used to smuggle people into the United States.

There was no sign of the people in the boat. Federal agents are handling the investigation into the smuggling operation.

Earlier in the week, 15 people were taken into custody when a smuggling boat from Mexico landed on the Gaviota coastline, near El Capitan State Beach.

Lance Orozco has been News Director of KCLU since 2001, providing award-winning coverage of some of the biggest news events in the region, including the Thomas and Woolsey brush fires, the deadly Montecito debris flow, the Borderline Bar and Grill attack, and Ronald Reagan's funeral.