Son of "El Chapo" extradition to USA stopped after 29 killed

On 5th January 2021, the Mexican Army and National Guard launched an operation in Northern Mexico to detain alleged drug cartel leader Ovidio Guzmán. This followed the US State Department offering up to $5 million for information leading to his capture. During the operation, 200 special forces were deployed and resulted in the deaths of 29 people, 19 suspected gang members and 10 military personnel. No civilian deaths or injuries were reported.

Ovidio Guzmán had previously been arrested in October 2019, but was released on the orders of Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador to avoid further bloodshed. The US State Department has stated that Guzmán, alongside his brother Joaquín Guzmán-López, had inherited a great deal of the narcotics proceeds following the death of another brother, Edgar Guzmán-López. Guzmán and his brother are also alleged to oversee an estimated 11 methamphetamine labs in the state of Sinaloa.

The arrest of Ovidio Guzmán comes days before US President Joe Biden and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau visit Mexico City to attend the North American Leaders Summit and could be seen as a way for López Obrador to show the US that he is in control of the armed forces and Mexico’s security situation. As a result, security at Altiplano prison where Guzmán is detained has been increased.


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