Border Patrol officials say a small boat that flipped over on Sunday morning in the waters off Cabrillo National Monument in Southern California may have been part of a human smuggling operation. The boat overturned after crashing into the shoreline and then broke apart on the rocks, authorities said. First responders pulled 27 people out of the water, all suffering what San Diego Fire Department spokesperson Jose Ysea called “varying degrees of injuries,” with at least five needing CPR. According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, the boat was a “panga,” a type of low-slung fishing boat with an outboard motor often used by smugglers trying to bring people to the U.S. “It is very rocky over there, and the waves—while they weren’t too high—they looked pretty strong,” said Ysea. Three passengers are confirmed dead, and officials are still searching for other possible victims.
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