It was correctly predicted early this year, drug trafficker Joaquín Guzmán would be successfully captured and arrested on the 22nd of February. Internationally known as “El Chapo” or “Shorty,” Guzman escaped prison in 2001 and has been apart of a massive manhunt ever since. In 2011 Guzman was listed as the 10th wealthiest man in Mexico, his drug kingdom making him billions.
At the time of his first arrest in 1993 he was the most wealthy and powerful man in Mexico. He pushed tons of cocaine from Colombia through Mexico to the United States by air, sea, and road. He even had operations set up throughout the U.S and heroin connections in the Philippines. According to Malcolm Beith’s crime thriller “The Last Narco” when Guzman was captured in Guatemala on June 9, 1993 and transferred to Puente Grande maximum security prison in Mexico he escaped 8 years later. On January 19th, 2001 a security guard by the name of El Chito, open Guzman’s cell. Guzman got into a laundry cart and was rolled through to the front door by one of his men. He was then transported in the trunk of a car out of the town.
Guzman racked up a $5 million bounty by 2005. In 2009 he had two undercover officers killed and threatened a archbishop that left tips for the authorities. According to the Wall Street Journal, Guzman left a message next to the deceased officers stating ”Neither the government nor the priests can handle ‘El Chapo.’”
But this year, 2014, was the authorities’ year. With a number of informants and wire taps each phone call got us closer to Guzman. Mexican authorities got information from Mario Hidalgo Arguello one of Guzman’s couriers who spilled all the information he had. According to CNN “He told interrogators about a series of safe houses, they said, each with reinforced steel doors and escape hatches that led to tunnels.” Chapo’s ability to escape law enforcement has been speculated to be have caused one of the largest international manhunt, through his time in hiding Chapo expanded his drug world to opposite sides of the world, from Europe to Southeast Asia to Australia. Chapo’s arrest has already shown a decrease in the flow of drugs through Southern California.