HomeNewsBriefTop Mexico Prison Officials Arrested in Connection to 'El Chapo' Escape
BRIEF

Top Mexico Prison Officials Arrested in Connection to 'El Chapo' Escape

ELITES AND CRIME / 21 SEP 2015 BY DAVID GAGNE EN

Authorities in Mexico have arrested several high-level prison officials for their alleged role in the recent jailbreak of famed Sinaloa Cartel leader Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, raising concerns about the extent of corruption within the country's prison system. 

Mexican authorities recently announced the arrest of 13 suspects, including Celina Oseguera Parra -- the former head of Mexico's federal prisons -- and two ex-directors of the Altiplano prison, the maximum-security facility from which El Chapo escaped in July, reported the BBC. Another 10 prison officials who worked at the Altiplano prison were also arrested, reported the AFP.

Both Oseguera and the former directors of the Altiplano prison were fired shortly after the drug kingpin's escape. 

With the arrests, a total of 20 Mexican officials have now been implicated in the case; seven prison workers were also detained in July the week following Guzman's escape. 

El Chapo is the head of Mexico's most powerful drug trafficking organization, the Sinaloa Cartel, and was the world's most wanted criminal prior to his arrest in February 2014.

InSight Crime Analysis

The arrests of high-level officials reveals the extent to which El Chapo potentially managed to penetrate and corrupt the upper echelons of Mexico's prison system. It also provides further backing for those who say El Chapo and other powerful drug traffickers should be extradited to the United States -- although Guzman is considered the world's most prolific drug lord, there are certainly other Mexican capos with sufficient power (and wealth) to corrupt high-ranking prison officials. However, US-Mexico relations surrounding extraditions have been tense for decades, and Mexican authorities have demonstrated inconsistency in their policy of extraditing drug traffickers to the United States -- especially as it relates to El Chapo.

SEE ALSO: Mexico News and Profiles

Mexican authorities are under significant pressure to recapture El Chapo and bring those who aided his escape to trial. The government's investigation into the disappearance of 43 students last September has drawn heavy criticism, and authorities are likely hoping to avoid a similar situation with the Chapo case by demonstrating results. Nonetheless, the likelihood authorities will recapture the drug lord soon is slim, and the longer Guzman remains a fugitive the more the government's credibility will continue to suffer.

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

CONTRABAND / 25 NOV 2020

A flu vaccine in Mexico has become the latest drug to emerge on Latin America’s burgeoning black market medicine trade,…

COSTA RICA / 22 JUN 2021

At a time when elites are undermining anti-graft efforts across Central America, prosecutors in Costa Rica have launched a far-reaching…

ENVIRONMENTAL CRIME / 27 AUG 2021

Seizures of illegally harvested octopus off Mexico’s Yucatán peninsula are shedding light on how corruption in a coastal community facilitates…

About InSight Crime

LA ORGANIZACIÓN

Extensive Coverage of our Chronicles of a Cartel Bodyguard

23 SEP 2022

Our recent investigation, A Cartel Bodyguard in Mexico’s 'Hot Land', has received extensive media coverage.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime, American University Host Illegal Fishing Panel

19 SEP 2022

InSight Crime and the Center for Latin American & Latino Studies (CLALS) at American University discussed the findings of a joint investigation on IUU fishing at a September 9 conference.

THE ORGANIZATION

Impact on the Media Landscape

9 SEP 2022

InSight Crime’s first investigation on the Dominican Republic made an immediate impact on the Dominican media landscape, with major news outlets republishing and reprinting our findings, including in …

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Sharpens Its Skills

2 SEP 2022

Last week, the InSight Crime team gathered for our annual retreat in Colombia, where we discussed our vision and strategy for the next 12 months.  During the week, we also learned how to…

THE ORGANIZATION

Colombia’s Fragile Path to Peace Begins to Take Shape

26 AUG 2022

InSight Crime is charting the progress of President Gustavo Petro’s agenda as he looks to revolutionize Colombia’s security policy, opening dialogue with guerrillas, reforming the military and police, and…