El Chapo Guzman
Image Reuters

Joaquín Guzmán Loera, also known as "El Chapo" Guzman is a Mexican drug lord, leader of the Sinaloa Cartel, a criminal organization named after the Mexican state of Sinaloa where the organization was formed. He became Mexico’s top drug lord in 2003 after the arrest of Osiel Cardenas, his rival who belonged to the Gulf Cartel. He is now considered the most powerful drug trafficker in the world.

He was placed as the 10th richest man in Mexico with a net worth of about $1 billion. The DEA believes he has surpassed the influence of Pablo Escobar. Because of the influence of his criminal network in Chicago, the Chicago Crime Commission named him “Public Enemy Number One.” His drug empire goes throughout North America and reaches as far as Europe and Australia.

His organization smuggles tons of cocaine shipments from Colombia through Mexico to the United States. It has been involved in the production, and distribution of marijuana, methamphetamine and heroin. He was captured in 1993 in Guatemala and sentenced to 20 years in prison in Mexico.He was charged for drug trafficking, criminal associoation and bribery charges. He bribed prison guards and he was able to escape in 2001.

In the early 1980s ‘El Chapo’ was introduced to Miguel “El Padrino” Angel Felix Gallardo. Gallardo put him in charge of logistics, this including coordinating boat arrivals, airplane flights and trucks coming from Colombia into Mexico. When Gallardo was captured in 1989, Guzman took control of the entire organization.

He was in La Palma jail, which was a maximum security prison. In 1995, he was transferred to the Puente Grande prison in Jalisco after being convicted of the murder of Cardinal Juan Jesus Posadas Ocampo, possession of firearms and drug trafficking.

‘El Chapo’ was arrested overnight by U.S and Mexican authorities at a hotel in Mexico. He faces multiple federal drug trafficking indictments and he is on the DEA’s most wanted list. For the last several years, Sinaloa Cartel has been involved in the drug war throughout Mexico.

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