The boat broke up after crossing the coast of San Diego, California.
Four people have been killed and 12 injured when a boat suspected to be trying to “smuggle” into the United States has wrecked and hit the California coast.
A 26-foot (26-foot) cab driver – a small one – was found overturning at the Cabrillo Monument in San Diego at rugged Point Loma after a quick response at around 10am (17:00 GMT) on Sunday, the US Coast Guard said.
The boat was wrecked by the waves when it came time for an emergency operation, according to Rick Romero, San Diego Fire-Rescue police chief.
“When we got to the scene … There were people in the water, drowning, being suckled …” he told reporters.
“When we got to the scene, the boat was wrecked,” Romero said. “Things were tough: 5 to 6 waves, waves, cold.”
Authorities said about 30 people believed they were in the boat, while seven were rescued from the living water and many more arrived at the beach on their own.
Authorities told Reuters news agency that four people had died.
‘Under the scourge’
Financial authorities called the boatman, who was in prison, “suspected of smuggling”, adding that those who wanted to bring immigrants to the United States sometimes use large boats, such as a cab cruiser, to interact with sea vehicles.
“Any signal from our point of view was this smuggling,” said Jeff Stephenson, director of the US Border Patrol.
The status of their board was not immediately known, Stephenson said.
He hopes all those in the court will be counted, officials said.
There has been a dramatic increase in maritime smuggling in recent years with increasing employment within the US-Mexico border, according to the authorities.
The U.S. Border Patrol on Friday said law enforcement agencies had intensified its efforts to smash off the coast of San Diego over the weekend, trying to allay the misconception that hot weather in the region makes illegal crossing easier or easier, the agency said in a statement.
On Thursday, border patrolmen seized a minibus boat – an open boat – running without electricity 18km (11 miles) off the coast of Point Loma with 21 people.
The crew arrested all 15 men and six women. The agent confirmed that all of them were Mexican citizens who were not allowed to enter the US, according to a document issued by Customs and Border Protection issued.
Two of the crew members, suspected to be smugglers, will be charged, it said.