Sat, Oct 19, 2019 - Page 7 News List

Gunfight breaks out over El Chapo’s son

‘WANTED’:Gunmen fired on a Mexican patrol, who found the drug kingpin’s son Ovidio Guzman in a house. It is not clear if Guzman was arrested or free


Gunmen are pictured during clashes with federal forces following the detention of Ovidio Guzman, son of drug kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, in Culiacan, Mexico, on Thursday.

Photo: Reuters

An intense gunfight with heavy weapons and burning vehicles blocking roads on Thursday raged in the capital of Mexico’s Sinaloa State after security forces located one of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman’s sons who is wanted in the US on drug trafficking charges.

Mexican Secretary of Security and Citizen Protection Alfonso Durazo said 30 members of the National Guard and army were patrolling in Culiacan when they were fired on from a house. They repelled the attack and inside the house found Ovidio Guzman Lopez.

The house was then surrounded by heavily armed gunmen who had “a greater force” and authorities decided to suspend the operation, Durazo said.

He did not say if Ovidio Guzman was arrested or went free.

“With the goal of safeguarding the well-being and tranquility of Culiacan society, officials in the security Cabinet decided to suspend the actions,” Durazo said.

Jose Luis Gonzalez Meza, a lawyer for “El Chapo’s” family, said that Guzman’s family had told him “Ovidio is alive and free,” but that he had no more details about what had happened.

Ovidio was not one of the jailed Mexican drug lord’s best-known sons — Ivan Archivaldo Guzman and Jesus Alfredo Guzman are known as “los Chapitos,” or “the little Chapos,” and are believed to currently run their father’s Sinaloa cartel, together with Ismael “El Mayo” Zambada.

However, Ovidio Guzman was indicted last year by a grand jury in Washington, along with a fourth brother, for the alleged trafficking of cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana.

Following Thursday’s localization of Ovidio Guzman, Culiacan exploded in violence with armed civilians in trucks roaring through the city’s center shooting what appeared to be .50-caliber sniper rifles and machine guns.

Videos published on social media showed a scene resembling a war zone, with gunmen, some wearing black ski masks over their faces, riding in the back of trucks firing mounted machine guns as vehicles burned. People could be seen running for cover as machinegun fire rattled around them.

Sinaloa Secretary of Public Safety Cristobal Castaneda told Milenio television that there were people wounded, but did not provide a casualty figure.

He did not rule out that there were deaths.

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