HomeNewsBriefExpert Says Weakened Sinaloa Cartel Under Attack by Rivals
BRIEF

Expert Says Weakened Sinaloa Cartel Under Attack by Rivals

BELTRAN LEYVA ORG / 10 OCT 2016 BY LUIS FERNANDO ALONSO EN

An award-winning Mexican journalist says the criminal empire of jailed kingpin Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán is being hacked apart by his rivals, suggesting the Sinaloa Cartel could fracture in the absence of his leadership.

In an interview with Aristegui Noticias, investigative journalist and organized crime expert Anabel Hernández cited recent violence targeted at family members of El Chapo as evidence that the crime boss' organization is under attack from rival groups.

"For the first time we might be seeing the real fall of Chapo Guzmán," Hernández said, adding that the kingpin "no longer controls even his own house."

Hernández says knowledgeable sources have told her that El Chapo's nephew Alfredo Beltrán Guzmán, alias "El Mochomito," of the rival Beltrán Leyva Organization (BLO), has entered into an anti-Chapo alliance with the Jalisco Cartel - New Generation (Cartel Jalisco Nueva Generación - CJNG).

Hernández said that El Chapo's declining clout became evident after BLO operatives reportedly attacked the home of El Chapo's mother in La Tuna, Sinaloa in June -- an incident that was followed by other deadly clashes in the area. This thesis was strengthened in August when CJNG operatives kidnapped El Chapo's sons Iván and Alfredo from a restaurant in the nearby state of Jalisco. The sons were subsequently released unharmed.

Hernández also claimed a recent ambush against a military convoy in Culiacán, Sinaloa could have been perpetrated by El Mochomito in order to cause disruption in El Chapo's territory. According to local news outlet Ríodoce, the area has been the scene of recent heavy fighting between the Sinaloa Cartel and the BLO.

Initially, El Chapo's sons were blamed for the attack, but since then the government has not mentioned who may have been responsible. Hernández noted that El Chapo's lawyer has said the brothers had nothing to do with the attack.

InSight Crime Analysis

As El Chapo's extradition to the United States becomes more likely, it seems that his criminal empire is beginning to fragment, both in his home state of Sinaloa and across Mexico. As this fragmentation occurs, enterprising rival crime groups may be attempting to pick off territory previously controlled by the crime boss.

Indeed, it appears that the CJNG is attempting to seize some of El Chapo's most lucrative territory. The group has reportedly aligned itself with the remnants of the Arellano Félix Cartel to form the Tijuana Cartel - New Generation (Cartel Tijuana Nueva Generación) in order to wrest control of the Tijuana trafficking corridor away from El Chapo. Additionally, in March of 2016, reports emerged of an ongoing conflict between CJNG and Sinaloa in the state of Colima, home to the strategically important port of Manzanillo.

SEE ALSO: Mexico News and Profiles

The confrontations in Sinaloa and throughout Mexico are probably not indicative of a full-scale war between the Sinaloa Cartel on one side and BLO and CJNG on the other. Instead, it seems that these organizations are attempting to take advantage of a weakened Sinaloa Cartel in an increasingly fragmented and disjointed criminal landscape. And if El Chapo is eventually extradited to the United States, there will be little he can do to stop this from happening.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

MEXICO / 19 JUL 2012

Mexican President-elect Enrique Peña Nieto discussed his proposed plan to create a specialized military force under civilian control in a…

ARGENTINA / 22 JAN 2019

With a worsening crisis in Venezuela, dark days in Nicaragua, an ever more fragile peace process in Colombia, new governments…

HONDURAS / 22 FEB 2012

As politicians prep for Honduras’ 2013 general elections, allegations are surfacing that some electoral bids are funded by drug money,…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Unraveling the Web of Elites Connected to Organized Crime

27 JUL 2021

InSight Crime published Elites and Organized Crime in Nicaragua, a deep dive into the relationships between criminal actors and elites in that Central American nation.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime’s Greater Focus on US-Mexico Border

20 JUL 2021

InSight Crime has decided to turn many of its investigative resources towards understanding and chronicling the criminal dynamics along the US-Mexico border.

THE ORGANIZATION

Key Arrests and Police Budget Increases Due to InSight Crime Investigations

8 JUL 2021

With Memo Fantasma’s arrest, InSight Crime has proven that our investigations can and will uncover major criminal threats in the Americas.

THE ORGANIZATION

Organized Crime’s Influence on Gender-Based Violence

30 JUN 2021

InSight Crime investigator Laura N. Ávila spoke on organized crime and gender-based violence at the launch of a research project by the United Nations Development Programme.

THE ORGANIZATION

Conversation with Paraguay Judicial Operators on PCC

24 JUN 2021

InSight Crime Co-director Steven Dudley formed part of a panel attended by over 500 students, all of whom work in Paraguay's judicial system.