Drug lord 'El Chapo' Guzman escapes through tunnel

Jul 12, 2015 2:21 PM by News Staff

MEXICO CITY (AP) - In a scheme befitting a caper movie, Mexico's most powerful drug lord, Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, escaped from a maximum security prison through a 1.5-kilometer (1 mile) tunnel from a small opening in the shower area of his cell, the country's top security official announced Sunday.

The elaborate underground escape route built allegedly without the detection of authorities allowed Guzman to do what Mexican officials promised would never happen after his re-capture last year - slip out of one of the country's most secure penitentiaries for the second time.

Eighteen employees from various part of the Altiplano prison 55 miles west of Mexico City have been taken in for questioning, Security Commissioner Monte Alejandro Rubido said in a news conference without answering questions.

A manhunt began immediately late Saturday for the head of the powerful Sinaloa Cartel, which has an international reach and is believed to control most of the major crossing points for drugs at the U.S. border with Mexico.

If Guzman is not captured immediately, the drug lord will likely be back in full command and control of the Sinaloa cartel in 48 hours, said Michael S. Vigil, a retired U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration chief of international operations.

"We may never find him again," he said.


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