CHICAGO (CBS) — Six months after he escaped from a maximum security prison in Mexico, drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman – Chicago’s “Public Enemy Number One” – has been captured, according to a Twitter message from Mexico’s president.
Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto wrote on his Twitter account Friday: “Mission accomplished: we have him. I want to inform Mexicans Joaquin Guzman Loera has been arrested.”
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency confirmed Guzman’s capture.
Benjamin Bergman, a spokesman for the Mexican marines, said Guzman was captured after a shootout with Mexican marines in the city of Los Mochis, in Guzman’s home state of Sinaloa early Friday. He said Guzman was in “good condition.”
The Mexican Navy said marines acting on a tip raided a home in the town of Los Mochis before dawn. People inside the structure opened fire when the marines approached. Five suspects were killed and six others were arrested in the clash. One Mexican marine also was wounded. The marine’s injuries were not life threatening.
Marines seized two armored vehicles, eight rifles, one handgun, and a rocket-propelled grenade launcher.
Guzman, who was arrested in February 2014, escaped from a Mexican prison on July 11, 2015, using an elaborate lighted tunnel. It was the second time Guzman has escaped from custody in Mexico.
Guzman ran the powerful Sinaloa drug cartel, a group tied to the violent drug war in Mexico, and which supplies much of the illegal drugs sold on the streets of Chicago. Its reach spans as far away as Europe and Australia. The federal government considers Guzman to be the most powerful and ruthless drug trafficker in the world.
In 2009, federal prosecutors in Chicago indicted Guzman and nine others U.S. prosecutors in Chicago indicted Guzman, Hernandez and eight others in a $1 billion trafficking conspiracy; accusing them of using speed boats, submarines, and even a cargo plane to move drugs from South America to Mexico, then to the U.S.
Federal agents have said the Sinaloa cartel is to blame for much of the gang violence in the Chicago area, and Guzman is probably the most dangerous criminal in the world — able to direct drug trafficking and even street crime in Chicago while in hiding.