MEXICO — Mexican drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo”(Shorty) Guzman, head of the powerful Sinaloa Cartel, has escaped from a maximum security prison.
According to report, an estimated 50 Sinaloa cartel members attacked the Prison armed with firearms, mostly AK-47’s, and helped El Chapo escape with brute force in less than an hour. El Chapo was taken away in a helicopter reportedly flying southeast towards South America.
Guzman was captured in February 2014. He faces multiple federal drug trafficking indictments in the U.S. and was on the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s most-wanted list.
It is believed, Guzman transformed himself from a middling Mexican capo into arguably the most powerful drug trafficker in the world. His fortune grew to be estimated at more than $1 billion, which listed him among the World’s Most Powerful People”.
His Sinaloa Cartel empire still stretches throughout North America and reaches as far away as Europe and Australia. Sinaloa controls most of the major crossing points for drugs at the U.S. border with Mexico.
Guzman was first caught in Guatemala in 1993, extradited and sentenced to 20 years in prison in Mexico. He escaped from another maximum security prison, Puente Grande in western Jalisco state, in 2001 with the help of prison guards. Guzman was known for his ability to pay off local residents and even authorities who would tip him off to security operations launched for his capture.
Guzman was last seen in the shower area of the Altiplano prison, According to the National Security Commission.
The Mexican government has ordered a massive search to find El Chapo and requested to send troops to help any South American country “El Chapo” is seen in. Authorities believe he is heading towards Columbia. The U.S. military has deployed troops to Mexico to fight alongside the Mexican army against The giant Sinaloa cartel and its allies.
Former Mexican Attorney General Jesus Murillo Karam dismissed concerns that Guzman could escape a second time. That risk “does not exist,” Murillo Karam said. He has since been replaced by Arely Gomez as attorney general.
Mexican officials have launched a manhunt, with no immediate comment.