Two migrant boats capsize near San Diego, at least eight dead

STORY: Speaking to the media, San Diego Sector Commander Coast Guard James Spitler said San Diego emergency crews began a search and recovery operation late Saturday night, after receiving a 911 call about fishing boats in distress off the coast of San Diego's Black's Beach.

Crews arrived to find two fishing boats capsized in a 400-foot (366 m) area, and eight bodies were recovered from the water and the beach, San Diego Fire-Rescue Lifeguard Division Chief James Gartland said.

"This is one of the worst smuggling tragedies that I can think of in California, certainly here in the city of San Diego," Gartland said.

Officials did not know the nationalities of the victims but told reporters that they were all adults.

Hazardous weather conditions likely contributed to the danger of the maritime smuggling operation, and also hindered rescue efforts overnight, officials said. The U.S. Coast Guard and the San Diego Fire-Rescue Lifeguard division were still involved in the recovery operation late Sunday morning.