Mexico City federal judge stopped Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman’s son, the alleged leader of the drug cartel Ovidio Guzman to the United States. It came after he was captured in an intensive operation in northern Mexico which resulted in 29 deaths.
The US has offered $5 million to help Guzman be extradited from drug trafficking.
Marcelo Ebrard (Mexico’s Foreign Minister) confirmed Thursday that there was an US arrest warrant dated September 19, 2019. However, Guzman will not be extradited immediately due to formalities. Guzman is still in Mexico’s legal system, according to Ebrard.
Televisa, Mexican media and other media reports that Guzman was later ordered to stay in 60-day preventive detention to await extradition. This order came after Guzman’s hearing at Altiplano federal maximum security prison.
CNN has reached out to Guzman’s defense for a response but has yet not heard back.
Video of El Chapo’s son getting arrested (October 2019).
Guzman’s father, El Chapo, had escaped Altiplano prison via a mile long tunnel featuring a motorbike on tracks. Later, Guzman was arrested and convicted in America of 10 counts including drug trafficking, firearms, and continuing criminal enterprise. He was sentenced to 30 years imprisonment and $12.6 billion forfeiture.
Ovidio Guzman had been previously taken into custody by federal authorities on October 2019. However, he was released on President Andres Manuel Obrador’s orders to avoid any further bloodshed.
His arrest comes just days before Joe Biden (US President) and Justin Trudeau (Canadian Prime Minister) visit Mexico City for North American Leaders Summit.
Lopez Obrador might capture Guzman as a way to show the US that Lopez Obrador is “in charge of the armed forces, and Mexico’s security situations,” Gladys McCormick (a Syracuse University associate professor who focuses on Mexico-US Relations) told CNN in an email.
“It also defuses power behind any ask of the Biden Administration to stem the tide fentanyl or other narcotics over the border,” she said.
Lopez Obrador said Friday that Guzman was not arrested in connection with Biden’s arrival. He also stated that Mexican authorities had acted on their own.
“About interpretations,” the Mexican President stated.
Chaos reigned in Culiacan following Guzman’s arrest on Thursday. Residents were asked to flee clashes in various areas by the authorities.
Luis Cresencio Sandoval, Defense Minister, said that his arrest was the culmination of a long operation involving 200 special forces. Local officials encouraged citizens to seek shelter at home amid the clashes with members of the cartel in different parts.
After Guzman and 21 other people were arrested, violence broke out in Sinaloa. At least 19 suspected gang members died, as well as 10 military personnel. There were no civilian deaths or injuries.
Minister added that security at Altiplano prison had been improved since Guzman was arrested.
Later, Friday’s President declared that the city is calmer and that officials were working to clear roads.
Lopez Obrador explained that all roads in Culiacan were opened and that they are currently working on getting rid of vehicles along the streets.
Culiacan can be found in Sinaloa state, home to the Sinaloa Cartel. This is one of the largest narcotics trafficking groups in the world.
According to the US State Department’s report, investigations by law enforcement indicated that Guzman, his brother Joaquin Guzman Lopez and Guzman “inherited a significant amount of the proceeds of narcotics” following the death Edgar Guzman Lopez.
They “began investing large amounts in the purchase of marijuana and cocaine in Mexico.” They also bought large quantities of ephedrine (from Argentina) and arranged for its smuggling into Mexico. This was as they started to experiment with methamphetamine-producing methods,” according to the State Department.