29 killed in arrest of Mexico drug kingpin’s son

CULIACAN: Ten troopers and 19 suspected criminals had been killed in an operation to arrest a son of jailed drug trafficker Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, Mexico‘s authorities stated Friday, with a dramatic shootout sowing terror at an airport.
Hundreds of troopers retook management of the Sinaloa cartel stronghold of Culiacan, which resembled a battle zone after livid gunmen went on the rampage to attempt to free their boss.
Ovidio Guzman was captured within the northwestern metropolis on Thursday and flown to Mexico Metropolis earlier than being transferred to the high-security Altiplano jail in central Mexico from which “El Chapo” as soon as escaped.
The 32-year-old, nicknamed “El Raton” (The Mouse), had allegedly helped to run his father’s operations because the former Sinaloa cartel boss was extradited to the United States in 2017.
A colonel who commanded an infantry battalion was amongst these killed after his workforce got here beneath assault following the arrest, Protection Minister Luis Cresencio Sandoval instructed reporters.
One other 35 troopers sustained gunshot wounds and had been taken to hospital, whereas 21 gunmen had been arrested.
Sandoval stated a civilian airliner that was about to take off from Culiacan Worldwide Airport, in addition to two Mexican Air Pressure plane, had been hit by gunfire as cartel henchmen tried to free Ovidio Guzman.
The army planes “needed to make an emergency touchdown” after receiving “a major variety of impacts,” stated Sandoval.
No accidents resulted from the aircraft assaults and Culiacan airport resumed operations on Friday.
Multimillion-dollar bounty
America had issued a reward of as much as $5 million for data resulting in Ovidio Guzman’s seize. It accuses him of being a key participant within the Sinaloa cartel based by his father.
The arrest got here as Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador ready to welcome his US counterpart Joe Biden for a North America leaders’ summit subsequent week the place safety is anticipated to be excessive on the agenda.
The drug trafficker’s detention was “not an insignificant accomplishment by Mexican authorities,” US Nationwide Safety Council spokesman John Kirby stated.
“And we’re definitely grateful for that,” he stated, including that the USA would hold working “in lockstep” with Mexico, notably to sort out trafficking of the highly effective artificial opioid fentanyl.
Mexico denied that the USA had been concerned within the operation to catch Ovidio Guzman.
“We act autonomously, independently. Sure there’s cooperation and there’ll proceed to be, however we make the selections as a sovereign authorities,” Lopez Obrador instructed reporters.
Ovidio Guzman secured a courtroom order blocking his speedy extradition to the USA.
In any case, Mexico’s authorities dominated out a fast-track extradition, saying the correct authorized course of could be adopted.
Cocaine, meth and fentanyl
Authorities stated calm had returned to Culiacan, the place safety forces eliminated dozens of stolen and burnt out autos scattered all through town of 800,000 individuals.
Movies on social media Thursday had proven passengers and Aeromexico airline staff ducking behind counters as gunfire rang out at Culiacan airport.
Cartel gunmen set vehicles and vehicles ablaze at a number of intersections within the metropolis, and authorities reported 19 roadblocks.
El Chapo is serving a life sentence in the USA for trafficking lots of of tons of medicine into the nation over the course of 25 years.
Nonetheless, his cartel stays one of the crucial highly effective in Mexico, accused by Washington of exploiting an opioid epidemic by flooding communities in the USA with fentanyl, an artificial drug about 50 instances stronger than heroin.
Ovidio Guzman and one among his brothers are accused of overseeing almost a dozen methamphetamine labs in Sinaloa in addition to conspiring to distribute cocaine and marijuana, in keeping with the US State Division.
Ovidio Guzman additionally allegedly ordered the murders of informants, a drug trafficker and a Mexican singer who refused to carry out at his marriage ceremony, it stated.
He was captured briefly as soon as earlier than in 2019, however safety forces freed him after his cartel waged an all-out battle in response.
His launch prompted sharp criticism of Lopez Obrador, who stated the choice was made to guard civilians’ lives.

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