Will 2014 Be the Year Mexican Drug Lord 'El Chapo' Guzman Is Caught?
Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman Loera (EFE)
In 2013, Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán was falsely declared dead, rumored to be hiding in Honduras and allegedly admitted to a private hospital after suffering a heart attack. The fact is that the world’s most powerful drug kingpin has not only eluded an international manhunt for yet another year, but also managed to geographically expand his criminal empire.
His success as the #1 supplier of illegal drugs to the U.S. is attributed to his extraordinary entrepreneurial skills. In an interview with Spain’s El País, Guillermo Valdés, former director of Mexico’s intelligence agency known as CISEN, said El Chapo is a “business genius.” Valdés added: “He’s a very intelligent person, with a great talent for listening, a great talent for seducing people, and besides that, he has a great imagination and entrepreneurial creativity.” According to Valdés, El Chapo is the CEO of a business empire as complex as Amazon or UPS.
Aside from the U.S., where his organization reportedly traffics drugs in more than 1,000 cities, Guzmán also operates in Central and South America, Europe and more recently in Asia. In the first days of 2014, police in the Netherlands arrested a person suspected of being a top enforcer for Guzmán’s Sinaloa Cartel on drug-trafficking charges in Southern California, the U.S. attorney’s office in San Diego said. The suspect, José Rodrigo Arechiga Gamboa, was captured on December 31 and accused of trafficking methamphetamines, cocaine and marijuana.
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