The Sinaloa Cartel (Spanish: Cártel de Sinaloa), also known as the Guzmán-Loera Organization, the Pacific Cartel, the Federation and the Blood Alliance, is an international drug trafficking, money laundering, and organized crime syndicate established during the late 1980s. The cartel is primarily based in the city of Culiacán, Sinaloa, with operations in the Mexican states of Baja California, Durango, Sonora, and Chihuahua. The 'Federation' was partially splintered when the Beltrán-Leyva brothers broke apart from the Sinaloa Cartel.
|Founding location||Culiacán, Sinaloa, Mexico|
Sinaloa, Chihuahua, Durango, Colima, Baja California Sur, Quintana Roo, Michoacán, Aguascalientes, Sonora
Australia, New Zealand, Europe: Spain, Germany, Italy, Russia, Albania, Asia: Philippines, West Africa
|Leader(s)||Joaquín Guzmán Loera |
Ismael Zambada García
Héctor Luis Palma Salazar
Rafael Caro Quintero
Juan José Esparragoza Moreno
El Chapo sons Iván Guzmán and Alfredo Guzman
|Criminal activities||Money laundering, Weapon trafficking, Murder, Kidnapping, Drug trafficking, Bribery|
The United States Intelligence Community considers the Sinaloa Cartel "the most powerful drug trafficking organization in the world" and in 2011, the Los Angeles Times called it "Mexico's most powerful organized crime group." The Sinaloa Cartel operates in the "Golden Triangle", the states of Sinaloa, Durango, and Chihuahua. The region is a major producer of Mexican opium and marijuana. According to the U.S. Attorney General, the Sinaloa Cartel was responsible for importing into the United States and distributing nearly 200 short tons (180 t) of cocaine and large amounts of heroin between 1990 and 2008. According to the National Drug Intelligence Center, within the U.S. the Sinaloa Cartel is primarily involved in the distribution of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, marijuana and MDMA. It is also the majority supplier of illicit fentanyl to North America.
As of 2017[update], the Sinaloa Cartel is the most active drug cartel involved in smuggling illicit drugs into the United States and trafficking them throughout the United States. After the arrest of Joaquín 'El Chapo' Guzmán, the cartel is now headed by Ismael Zambada García (aka El Mayo) and Guzmán's sons, Alfredo Guzmán Salazar and Ivan Archivaldo Salazar.
- 1 Background
- 2 Leadership
- 3 Operations
- 4 Allegations of collusion with Mexican federal government forces
- 5 Allegations of collusion with the US federal government
- 6 Battling the Tijuana Cartel
- 7 Edgar Valdez Villarreal
- 8 See also
- 9 References
- 10 External links
Pedro Avilés Pérez was a pioneer drug lord in the Mexican state of Sinaloa in the late 1960s. He is considered to be the first generation of major Mexican drug smugglers of marijuana who marked the birth of large-scale Mexican drug trafficking. He also pioneered the use of aircraft to smuggle drugs to the United States.
Second generation Sinaloan traffickers such as Rafael Caro Quintero, Ernesto Fonseca Carrillo, Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo and Avilés Pérez' nephew Joaquín 'El Chapo' Guzmán would claim they learned all they knew about 'narcotraficantes' while serving in the Avilés organization. Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo, who eventually founded the Guadalajara Cartel, was arrested in 1989 and, while incarcerated, he remained one of Mexico's major traffickers, maintaining contact with his organization via mobile phone until he was transferred to a new maximum security prison in the 1990s. At that point his nephews, the Arellano Félix brothers, left and created their own organization which came to be known as the Tijuana Cartel, while the Sinaloa Cartel continued to be run by former lieutenants Héctor Luis Palma Salazar, Adrián Gómez González and Joaquín Guzmán Loera (El Chapo).
The Sinaloa Cartel used to be known as La Alianza de Sangre ("Blood Alliance"). When Héctor Luis Palma Salazar (a.k.a. El Güero Palma) was arrested on 23 June 1995 by the Mexican Army, his partner Joaquín Guzmán Loera took leadership of the cartel. Guzmán was captured in Guatemala on 9 June 1993, and extradited to Mexico, where he was jailed in a maximum security prison, but on 19 January 2001, Guzmán escaped and resumed his command of the Sinaloa Cartel. Guzmán has two close associates, Ismael Zambada García and Ignacio Coronel Villareal. Guzman and Zambada became Mexico's top drug kingpins in 2003, after the arrest of their rival Osiel Cardenas of the Gulf Cartel. Another close associate, Javier Torres Félix, was arrested and extradited to the U.S. in December 2006. On 29 July 2010, Ignacio Coronel was killed in a shootout with the Mexican military in Zapopan, Jalisco. Guzman was captured on 22 February 2014 overnight by American and Mexican authorities. On 11 July 2015, he escaped from the Federal Social Readaption Center No. 1, a maximum-security prison in the State of Mexico, through a tunnel in his prison cell. Guzman resumed his command of the Sinaloa Cartel, but on 8 January 2016, Guzman was captured again during a raid on a home in the city of Los Mochis, in Guzman's home state of Sinaloa. With the arrest of Joaquín Guzmán Loera, Ismael Zambada will most likely assume leadership of the Sinaloa Cartel.
The Sinaloa Cartel has a presence in 17 of the 31 Mexican states, with important centers in Mexico City, Tepic, Toluca, Zacatecas, Guadalajara, and most of the state of Sinaloa. The cartel is primarily involved in the smuggling and distribution of Colombian cocaine, Mexican marijuana, methamphetamine and Mexican and Southeast Asian heroin into the United States. It is believed that a group known as the Herrera Organization would transport multi-ton quantities of cocaine from South America to Guatemala on behalf of the Sinaloa Cartel. From there it is smuggled north to Mexico and later into the U.S. Other shipments of cocaine are believed to originate in Colombia from Cali and Medellín drug-trafficking groups from which the Sinaloa Cartel handle transportation across the U.S. border to distribution cells in Arizona, California, Illinois, Texas, New York, and Washington state.
Before his arrest, Vicente Zambada Niebla ("El Vicentillo"), son of Ismael Zambada García ("El Mayo"), played a key role in the Sinaloa Cartel. Vicente Zambada was responsible for coordinating multi-ton cocaine shipments from Central and South American countries, through Mexico, and into the United States for the Sinaloa Cartel. To accomplish this task he used every means available: Boeing 747 cargo aircraft, narco submarines, container ships, go-fast boats, fishing vessels, buses, rail cars, tractor trailers and automobiles. He was arrested by the Mexican Army on 18 March 2009 and extradited on 18 February 2010 to Chicago to face federal charges. He filed a guilty plea agreement and agreed to cooperate with government on 8 November 2018.
In the late 1980s, the United States Drug Enforcement Administration believed the Sinaloa Cartel was the largest drug trafficking organization operating in Mexico. By the mid-1990s, according to one court opinion, it was believed to be the size of the Medellín Cartel during its prime. The Sinaloa Cartel was believed to be linked to the Juárez Cartel in a strategic alliance following the partnership of their rivals, the Gulf Cartel and Tijuana Cartel. Following the discovery of a tunnel system used to smuggle drugs across the Mexican/US border, the group has been associated with such means of trafficking.
By 2005, the Beltrán-Leyva brothers, who were formerly aligned with the Sinaloa Cartel, had come to dominate drug trafficking across the border with Arizona. By 2006, the Sinaloa Cartel had eliminated all competition across the 528 km of Arizona border. The Milenio (Michoacán), Jalisco (Guadalajara), Sonora (Sonora), and Colima cartels are now branches of the Sinaloa Cartel. At this time the organisation was laundering money at global scale, mainly through British bank HSBC.
In January 2008 the cartel allegedly split into a number of warring factions, which is a major cause of the epidemic of drug violence Mexico has seen in the last year. Murders by the cartel often involve beheadings or bodies dissolved in vats of alkali and are sometimes filmed and posted on the Internet as a warning to rival gangs.
As of 2013, the Sinaloa Cartel continues to dominate the Sonora-Arizona corridor, which extends for nearly 375 miles. It relies on eight "plaza" bosses, leaders of a specific geographic region along the corridor, to coordinate, direct, and support the flow of narcotics north into the United States. Key cities along the corridor include the Mexicali plaza, San Luis Rio Colorado plaza, Sonoyta plaza, Nogales plaza, and the Agua Prieta plaza.
The Tucson and Phoenix, Arizona metropolitan areas are major trans-shipment and distribution points for the cartel in the US. To coordinate operations in the southeast US, Atlanta has emerged as a major distribution center and accounting hub and the presence of the Sinaloa Cartel there has brought ruthless violence to that area. Chicago continues to be a major Sinaloa distribution point for the Midwest, taking advantage of a strong local demand market and convergence of several major interstate systems that offer distribution throughout the US. The cartel also benefited for a long time of easiness in cash transactions and money laundering through banks with presence both in the US and Mexico like HSBC. In 2013, the Chicago Crime Commission named Joaquin "Chapo" Guzmán "Public Enemy No. 1" of a city Guzmán has never set foot in. He is the only individual to receive the title since Al Capone. The focal point for Sinaloa in Chicago is the city's "Little Village" neighborhood. From this strategic point, the cartel distributes their product at the wholesale level to dozens of local street gangs, as much as 2 metric tons a month, in a city with over 120,000 documented gang members. The Gangster Disciples are one of the local gangs most actively working with the cartel. The cartel's attempts to control the Chicago drug market have brought them into direct conflict with other Chicago gangs, including the Black P. Stones, Vice Lords, and Black Disciples, resulting in an increase in violence in the city.
The Sinaloa Cartel has operations in the Philippines as a trans-shipment point for drugs smuggled into the United States. Since 2013, the cartel has been operating in the Philippines after a raid on a ranch in Lipa, Batangas, according to a statement by Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) director general Arthur Cacdac, and have entered the country without notice. President Rodrigo Duterte further confirmed the presence of the Sinaloa Cartel in the Philippines, saying that the cartel uses the country as a trans-shipment point for drugs smuggled into the United States. The presence of the cartel in the Philippines has worsened the ongoing war between drug lords, drug cartels and the government in that country.
On 4 July 2019, Juan Ulises Galván Carmona, alias “El Buda”, was killed by two hitmen in a convenience store in Chetumal, the capital of Quintana Roo state along Mexico’s Caribbean coast. El Buda served as the leader of the Sinaloa Cartel's drug trafficking activities and shipments from Central and South America.
Arrest and seizuresEdit
On 11 May 2008, Alfonso Gutiérrez Loera, cousin of Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán Loera, and 5 other drug traffickers were arrested after a shootout with Federal Police officers in Culiacan, Sinaloa. Along with the captured suspects, 16 assault rifles, 3 grenades, 102 magazines and 3,543 rounds of ammunition were seized.
On 25 February 2009, the U.S. government announced the arrest of 750 members of the Sinaloa Cartel across the U.S. in Operation Xcellerator. They also announced the seizure of more than $59 million in cash and numerous vehicles, planes, and boats.
In March 2009, the Mexican Government announced the deployment of 1,000 Federal Police officers and 5,000 Mexican Army soldiers to restore order in Ciudad Juárez, which has suffered the highest number of casualties in the country.
On 20 August 2009, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) broke up a large Mexican drug operation in Chicago, and uncovered a major distribution network operated by the Flores crew led by twin brothers Margarito and Pedro Flores that operated there. The drug operation allegedly brought 1.5 to 2 tons of cocaine every month to Chicago from Mexico and shipped millions of dollars south of the border. The shipments were mostly bought from the Sinaloa Cartel and at times from the Beltrán-Leyva Cartel, and it is assumed that both cartels threatened the Flores crew with violence if they bought from other rival drug organizations.
The Mexican Secretary of National Defense (Sedena) reported the arrest of Jesús Alfredo Salazar Ramírez, alias "El Muñeco" or "El Pelos", who was identified as the current lieutenant of the South Pacific Cartel in the state of Sonora. As stated by Sedena, "El Muñeco" worked as an administrator under Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán and is believed to be responsible for the death of the activist Nepomuceno Moreno. Jesús Alfredo Salazar Ramírez was arrested 1 November 2012 in the municipality of Huixquilucan, by military personnel working with the Mexican Attorney General's office (PGR). "El Muñeco" is considered to be one of the most important lieutenants of Joaquín Guzmán Loera, evident from his control of the planting, production, and trafficking of drugs in Sonora and in the mountains of Chihuahua, which were sent predominantly to the US. He is linked to various homicides, among them the lawyer Rubén Alejandro Cepeda Leos, who was assassinated 20 December 2011 in the city of Chihuahua, Chihuahua. According to the Sedena he is the assumed assassin of activist Nepomuceno Moreno Núñez, which occurred 28 November 2011. Nepomuceno Moreno was an activist who sought justice for the disappearance of his son and joined the Mexican Indignados Movement, led by the poet Javier Sicilia.
José Rodrigo Aréchiga Gamboa (alias "Chino Antrax") was a high-ranking member of the Sinaloa Cartel. He was a leader and founding member of Los Ántrax, an armed squadron formed to protect Ismael "El Mayo" Zambada García, founding member of the Sinaloa Cartel. He was arrested 30 December 2013 at the Amsterdam airport Schiphol in the Netherlands, at the petition of the United States of America, and with the help of Interpol, on charges related to drug trafficking.
The Sinaloa cartel's loss of partners in Mexico does not appear to have affected its ability to smuggle drugs from South America to the USA. On the contrary, based on seizure reports, the Sinaloa cartel appears to be the most active smuggler of cocaine. The reports also demonstrated the cartels possess the ability to establish operations in previously unknown areas, such as Central America and South America, even as far south as Peru, Paraguay and Argentina. It also appears to be most active in diversifying its export markets; rather than relying solely on U.S. drug consumption, it has made an effort to supply distributors of drugs in Latin American and European countries.
On 19 December 2013, the Federal Police of Mexico killed Gonzalo "El Macho Prieto" Inzunza in a gun battle in Puerto Penasco, Sonora. Inzunza was believed to be one of Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman's chief cartel leaders.
In February 2014, "El Chapo" Guzmán was arrested. The capture of the Sinaloa Cartel's "El Chapo" Guzmán ignited a fight over the trial's location. Calls for his extradition to the United States started just hours after his arrest. Guzmán also faces federal indictment in several locations including San Diego, New York, and Texas, among other places.
On 11 July 2015 "El Chapo" escaped from a maximum security prison, which is his second successful jailbreak from a maximum security facility in 14 years.
On 8 January 2016, Guzman was arrested again during a raid on a home in the city of Los Mochis, in Guzman's home state of Sinaloa.
Since February 2010, the major cartels have aligned in two factions: one integrated by the Juárez Cartel, Tijuana Cartel and Los Zetas; the other faction integrated by the Gulf Cartel and Sinaloa Cartel. In addition to maintaining its anti-Zetas alliance with the Gulf cartel, Sinaloa in 2011 affiliated itself with the Knights Templar in Michoacán, and to counter Los Zetas in Jalisco state, Sinaloa affiliated itself with the Jalisco New Generation Cartel.
The Sinaloa Federation has formed alliances with two powerful Chinese Triads, Sun Yee On and the 14K Triad, to acquire the precursor chemicals needed in creating highly-addictive synthetic drugs like Methamphetamines. Operatives like local gangs pick up the chemicals from dropoff points and ship them to hidden labs. The resulting products are shipped to the United States and many South American countries.
Tijuana Airport/Drug Super TunnelsEdit
In 1989, the Sinaloa Cartel dug its first drug tunnel between a house in Agua Prieta, Sonora to a warehouse located in Douglas, Arizona. The 300-foot tunnel was discovered in May, 1990. Following the discovery by U.S. Customs and Mexican Federal Police, the Sinaloa Cartel began to focus their smuggling operations towards Tijuana and Otay Mesa, San Diego where it acquired a warehouse in 1992. After the assassination of Cardinal Juan Jesús Posadas Ocampo and six others at the Guadalajara airport on 24 May 1993, the gunmen boarded a commercial jet. When the jet landed at the Tijuana airport, both police and military units failed to cordon off the aircraft and the gunmen escaped. On 31 May 1993, Mexican federal agents searching for the gunmen found a partially completed 1500-foot tunnel adjacent to the Tijuana airport and crossing under the U.S.-Mexico border to a warehouse on Otay Mesa in San Diego. It was discovered as Mexican and San Diego officials were discussing the creation of a cross-border airport between Tijuana and Otay Mesa which would have undermined the drug tunneling operations in the area (see History of the Cross Border Xpress). The tunnel was described by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) in San Diego as the "Taj Mahal" of drug tunnels along the U.S.-Mexico border and was linked to Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzmán. It was five times longer than the Agua Prieta-Douglas tunnel and became the first of a series of drug "super tunnels" in Otay Mesa originating in and around the Tijuana airport through the former Ejido Tampico. The "super tunnels" were equipped with power, ventilation and rail tracks to allow the efficient movement of large loads of narcotics across the U.S.-Mexico border. As seen on image 1 Drug tunnel corridors the close proximity of the former Ejido Tampico to the Tijuana airport and U.S.-Mexico border made it an ideal staging area for smuggling operations into the United States.
The Mexican government's conflict with the former Ejido Tampico dated back to 1970, when they expropriated 320 hectares (790 acres) of the Ejido Tampico to build a new runway and passenger terminal at the Tijuana airport and agreed to pay the displaced ejidatarios (the communal farmers) $1.4 million pesos ($112,000 U.S. dollars in 1970). When the Mexican government failed to indemnify the ejidatarios for their lost farmland, they reoccupied a 79 hectares (200 acres) portion of the Tijuana airport and threatened armed conflict. As shown by image 2 Ejido Tampico, from 1970 to 2000, the occupied land at the Tijuana airport remained relatively undeveloped. In 1999, the Tijuana airport was privatized and became part of a 12 airport network known as Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacífico (Pacific Airport Group). In an attempt to resolve the dispute and remove the ejidatarios from the privatized Tijuana airport, the Mexican government established a value on the expropriated 320 hectares (790 acres) at $1.2 million pesos ($125,560 U.S. dollars in 1999) while the ejidatarios of the former Ejido Tampico taking into account the increase in property values from 1970 to 1999 and the privatization of the Tijuana airport established a commercial value on their lost land at $2.8 billion pesos ($294 million U.S. dollars). In 2002, Mexican President Vicente Fox, who had promised to resolve the issue, also failed. As shown image 2 Ejido Tampico comparison between 2000 and 2006, the ejidatarios then proceeded to commercially develop the 79 hectares (200 acres) area at the Tijuana airport by leasing buildings and parcels to trucking and storage companies. As shown by image 3 Drug Trafficking Tunnel, in 2006 the unpermitted development allowed the building of a 2,400-foot (730-meter) drug "super tunnel" originating from the former Ejido Tampico and adjacent to the Tijuana airport's runway. As prior drug tunnels, it crossed under the U.S.-Mexico border into a warehouse on Otay Mesa in San Diego with the capacity to move multi-ton loads of narcotics.
Similar to the "Taj Mahal" of drug tunnels discovered on Otay Mesa in 1993, the 2006 drug "super tunnel" was traced back to the Sinaloa Cartel. With unregulated trucking and warehouse operations, the former Ejido Tampico became a major distribution point for narcotics being moved into the United States. In the ensuing years, drug tunnels moving tons of narcotics were detected in and around the Tijuana airport. The former Ejido Tampico also continued to expand its unpermitted development and more drug tunnels were discovered operating within its boundary to warehouses located on Otay Mesa in San Diego, California. In 2011, at the westerly end of the Tijuana airport a 1,800-foot (550-meter) drug "super tunnel" was discovered dug under the airport's 10/28 runway from a warehouse located 980 feet (300 meters) from Mexico's 12th Military Air Base and 330 feet (100 meters) from a Mexican Federal Police station. As with prior "super tunnels", it was equipped with an elevator and electric rail cars to efficiently ferry narcotics across the U.S.-Mexico border. In December 2016, one month prior Joaquín 'El Chapo' Guzmán Loera's extradition to the U.S., two "super tunnels", one in operation while the other was under construction, were discovered by Mexican agents adjacent to the Tijuana airport/Ejido Tampico and the Otay Mesa border crossing. Both were associated with the Sinaloa Cartel. On 21 June 2017, Joaquín 'El Chapo' Guzmán's "girlfriend" and former legislature of the state of Sinaloa, Lucero Guadalupe Sánchez López, was arrested at the Tijuana airport's Cross Border Xpress by CBP (U.S. Customs and Border Protection) officers as she crossed into the U.S. She was charged with drug conspiracy and money laundering, and had been with Joaquín Guzmán when he escaped capture in 2014.
Allegations of collusion with Mexican federal government forcesEdit
In May 2009, the U.S. National Public Radio (NPR) aired multiple reports alleging that the Mexican federal police and military were working in collusion with the Sinaloa Cartel. In particular, the report claimed the government was helping the Sinaloa Cartel to take control of the Juarez Valley area and destroy other cartels, especially the Juarez Cartel. NPR's reporters interviewed dozens of officials and ordinary people for the journalistic investigation. One report quotes a former Juarez police commander who claimed the entire department was working for the Sinaloa Cartel and helping it to fight other groups. He also claimed that the Sinaloa Cartel had bribed the military. Also quoted was a Mexican reporter who claimed hearing numerous times from the public that the military had been involved in murders. Another source in the story was the U.S. trial of Manuel Fierro-Mendez, an ex-Juarez police captain who admitted to working for the Sinaloa Cartel. He claimed that the Sinaloa Cartel influenced the Mexican government and military in order to gain control of the region. A U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agent in the same trial alleged that Fierro-Mendez had contacts with a Mexican military officer. The report also alleged, with support from an anthropologist who studies drug trafficking, that data on the low arrest rate of Sinaloa Cartel members (compared to other groups) was evidence of favoritism on the part of the authorities. A Mexican official denied the allegation of favoritism, and a DEA agent and a political scientist also had alternate explanations for the arrest data. Another report detailed numerous indications of corruption and influence that the cartel has within the Mexican government.
Allegations of collusion with the US federal governmentEdit
In 2012, Newsweek reported about allegations from an anonymous former Sinaloa member turned informant and former DEA agents that alleged that Joaquín Guzmán's legal adviser, Humberto Loya-Castro, had become a key informant for the DEA. Loya-Castro had become an official informant of the DEA in 2005 but was already providing vital information on rival cartels since the 1990s; such intel was instrumental to the takedown of the Tijuana Cartel, the Sinaloa cartel's main rival, as well as the death of Arturo Beltrán Leyva, who led a splinter group from the Sinaloa cartel. Such information ensured Loya-Castro was immune from prosecution while also keeping the DEA concentrated on Sinaloa's rivals and away from their leadership. Such allegations were confirmed by court documents obtained by El Universal during their investigation of collaboration with top officials from the Sinaloa cartel. According to court documents, the DEA had struck agreements with the cartel's leadership that would ensure that they would be immune from extradition and prosecution in the US and would avoid disrupting the cartel's drug operations in exchange for intelligence which could be used against other drug cartels.
Statements from a Mexican diplomat, which were revealed from leaked emails from the Stratfor leak in 2012, appeared to imply the belief amongst Mexican officials that US officials were assisting the Sinaloa cartel's drug smuggling efforts into the US and were protecting the cartel while attacking its rivals in an attempt to lower violence between Mexican drug cartels; this was backed up by information provided by Mexican foreign agent, codenamed MX1. The allegation the US officials were controlling the drug trade through Mexico was perpetuated by the former spokesman of the State of Chihuahua, Guillermo Terrazas Villanueva.
In March 2015, BBC TV programme This World broadcast an episode entitled "Secrets of Mexico's Drug War" which reported on the US government's Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives' Operation Fast and Furious which had allowed licensed firearms dealers to sell weapons to illegal buyers acting on behalf of Mexican drug cartel leaders, in particular the Sinaloa Cartel. The BBC also reported on Vicente Zambada Niebla's claims of immunity from prosecution under a deal between the Mexican and US governments and his claims that the Sinaloa Cartel's leaders had provided US federal agents with information about rival Mexican drug gangs. In the same documentary it is shown that the US Justice Department invoked national security reasons to prevent Humberto Loya Castro, the lawyer of the Sinaloa Syndicate, from being summoned as a witness to the trial against Vicente Zambada Niebla.
Battling the Tijuana CartelEdit
The Sinaloa Cartel has been waging a war against the Tijuana Cartel (Arellano-Félix Organization) over the Tijuana smuggling route to the border city of San Diego, California. The rivalry between the two cartels dates back to the Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo setup of Palma's family. Félix Gallardo, following his imprisonment, bestowed the Guadalajara Cartel to his nephews in the Tijuana Cartel. On 8 November 1992, Palma struck out against the Tijuana Cartel at a disco club in Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, where eight Tijuana Cartel members were killed in the shootout, the Arellano-Félix brothers having successfully escaped from the location with the assistance of David "D" Barron, a member of the Logan Heights Gang.
In retaliation, the Tijuana Cartel attempted to set up Guzmán at Guadalajara airport on 24 May 1993. In the shootout that followed, six civilians were killed by the hired gunmen from Logan Heights. The dead included Roman Catholic Cardinal Juan Jesús Posadas Ocampo. The church hierarchy originally believed Posadas was targeted as revenge for his strong stance against the drug trade. However, Mexican officials believe Posadas just happened to be caught in cross fire. The cardinal arrived at the airport in a white Mercury Grand Marquis town car, known to be popular amongst drug barons. Barron had received intelligence that Guzmán would be arriving in a white Mercury Grand Marquis town car. Evidence that runs counter to a mistake theory is that Posadas did not look anything like Guzmán, he was wearing a long black cassock and a large pectoral cross, and he was gunned down from only two feet away.
Recently, it is believed that the Tijuana Cartel, or at least a sizable majority of it, has been either absorbed or forced to ally with the Sinaloa Federation, in part due to a former high-ranking Tijuana member called Eduardo Teodoro Garcia Simental, alias "El Teo" or "Tres Letras" allying with the Federation.
Edgar Valdez VillarrealEdit
Los Negros have been known to employ gangs such as the Mara Salvatrucha to carry out murders and other illegal activities. The group is involved in fighting in the Nuevo Laredo region for control of the drug trafficking corridor. Following the 2003 arrest of Gulf Cartel leader Osiel Cárdenas, it is believed the Sinaloa Cartel moved 200 men into the region to battle the Gulf Cartel for control. The Nuevo Laredo region is an important drug trafficking corridor into Laredo, Texas, where as much as 40% of all Mexican exports pass through into the U.S.
Following the 2004 assassination of journalist Roberto Javier Mora García from El Mañana newspaper, much of the local media has been cautious about their reporting of the fighting. The cartels have pressured reporters to send messages and wage a media war. The drug war has spread to various regions of Mexico, such as Guerrero, Mexico City, Michoacán and Tamaulipas.
- Zeidler, Special Agent Eileen. "5 Members of a Major Mexican Drug-Trafficking Organization Indicted in Operation Money Train". Drug Enforcement Administration. Archived from the original on 11 May 2012. Retrieved 18 September 2011. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- "Web of intrigue". Stuff. Retrieved 12 July 2015.
- "Mexican Drug Cartel Targets Australia". NPR. Retrieved 2 July 2012.
- McCAUL, MICHAEL T. "A Line in the Sand: Confronting the Threat at the Southwest Border" (PDF). HOUSE COMMITTEE ON HOMELAND SECURITY. Archived from the original (PDF) on 11 September 2011. Retrieved 12 October 2011. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- "Police Arrest Link Between Los Rastrojos and Mexican Cartels".
- "The Sinaloa Cartel and Columbian Cocaine".
- "What A Sinaloa Cartel Alliance Would Mean For The Shining Path".
- "Jalisco New Generation Cartel Aided El Chapo's escape".
- O'Reilly, Andrew. "Mexican Drug Cartels Join Forces with Italian Mafia to Supply Cocaine to Europe". Fox News. Retrieved 9 February 2017.
- "Sinaloa Cartel Influence is Steadily Growing In Tijuana". Borderland Beat. 23 February 2011.
- Agren, David (28 November 2016). "'The only two powerful cartels left': rivals clash in Mexico's murder capital" – via www.theguardian.com.
- The latter due to the coast of Mexico from which it originated.
- Freeman, Laurie. State of Siege:Drug-Related Violence and Corruption in Mexico (PDF). Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. pp. 7, 13, 15. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 November 2006. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- "El cártel de Sinaloa, una alianza de sangre". El Universal (in Spanish). 30 July 2010. Retrieved 20 June 2012.
- Rama, Anahi (7 April 2008). "Mexico blames Gulf cartel for surge in drug murders". Reuters. Retrieved 11 April 2008.
- Carter, Sara A. (3 March 2009). "100,000-foot soldiers in Mexican cartels". The Washington Times. Retrieved 3 March 2009.
- "Why are the Sinaloa Cartel the World's Most Powerful Gangsters?". International Business Times UK. Retrieved 12 July 2015.
- "Sinaloa Cartel". Retrieved 20 January 2017.
- "Mexico's Sinaloa gang grows empire, defies crackdown". Reuters. 19 January 2011. Retrieved 18 September 2011.
- Bailey, John J.; Roy Godson (2000). Organized Crime and Democratic Governability: Mexico and the U.S.-Mexican Borderlands. Univ of Pittsburgh Press. p. 146. ISBN 0-8229-5758-2.
- Beith, Malcolm (2010). The Last Narco. Grove Press. ISBN 978-0-8021-1952-0.
- "U.S. Intelligence Says Sinaloa Cartel Has Won Battle for Ciudad Juarez Drug Routes". CNS News. 9 April 2010. Archived from the original on 9 June 2012. Retrieved 24 June 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- Marosi, Richard (24 July 2011). "Unraveling Mexico's Sinaloa drug cartel". Los Angeles Times.
- "U.S. charges 10 accused Mexican drug cartel leaders". Reuters. The Washington Post. Archived from the original on 31 March 2012. Retrieved 20 August 2009. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- Chokshi, Niraj (26 February 2014). "Where 7 Mexican drug cartels are active within the U.S." Washington Post. Retrieved 12 July 2015.
- Miroff, Nick (13 November 2017). "Mexican traffickers making New York a hub for lucrative — and deadly — fentanyl". Washington Post. Retrieved 18 February 2018.
- "2015 National Drug Threat Assessment Summary" (PDF). Drug Enforcement Administration. United States Department of Justice: Drug Enforcement Administration. October 2015. pp. 1–2. Archived from the original (PDF) on 10 April 2016. Retrieved 10 April 2016.
Mexican TCOs pose the greatest criminal drug threat to the United States; no other group is currently positioned to challenge them. These Mexican poly-drug organizations traffic heroin, methamphetamine, cocaine, and marijuana throughout the United States, using established transportation routes and distribution networks. ... While all of these Mexican TCOs transport wholesale quantities of illicit drugs into the United States, the Sinaloa Cartel appears to be the most active supplier. The Sinaloa Cartel leverages its expansive resources and dominance in Mexico to facilitate the smuggling and transportation of drugs throughout the United States.Cite uses deprecated parameter
- Tracking Mexico's Cartels in 2018. Scott Stewart, Stratfor Tactical Analysis. 1 February 2018.
- McRae, Patricia B. (1998). "Reconceptualizing the Illegal Narcotics Trade and Its Effect on the Colombian and the Mexican State". Muhlenberg College – Department of Political Science. Historical Text Archive. Retrieved 20 August 2009.
- Narco historias sonorenses Archived 5 February 2009 at the Wayback Machine
- Boudreaux, Richard (5 July 2005). "Mexico's Master of Elusion". Articles.latimes.com. Retrieved 15 May 2012.
- Lyman, Michael D. (2010). Drugs in Society: Causes, Concepts and Control. Elsevier. p. 536. ISBN 1-4377-4450-8.
- Oppenheimer, Andres (1996). Bordering on Chaos: Guerrillas, Stockbrokers, Politicians, and Mexico's Road to Prosperity. Little Brown & Co. pp. 298, 202, 300. ISBN 0-316-65095-1.
- "Mexican Drug Cartels: Government Progress and Growing Violence". STRATFOR Global Intelligence. 11 December 2008. Archived from the original on 20 January 2012. Retrieved 25 August 2009. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- Crosthwaite, Luis Humberto (2002). Puro Border: Dispatches, Snapshots & Graffiti from La Frontera. Cinco Puntos Press. p. 115. ISBN 0-938317-59-8.
- Major Mexican Drug Trafficker's Assets in U.S. Frozen Archived 16 May 2008 at the Wayback Machine
- "Mexican drug lord killed in raid, officials say". CNN. 29 July 2010. Retrieved 30 July 2010.
- "El Chapo, Escaped Mexican Drug Lord, Is Recaptured in Gun Battle". The New York Times. 9 January 2016. Retrieved 20 January 2017.
- Winslow, Don (8 January 2016). "'El Chapo's' capture: Is the mission really accomplished?". CNN News. Retrieved 13 January 2016.
- "CRS Report for Congress" (PDF). Congressional Research Service. 16 October 2007. Cite journal requires
- Green, Eric (19 February 2004). "U.S. Arrests Alleged Mastermind of Mexico-Arizona Drug Tunnel". U.S. Department of State.
- Mallory, Stephen L (2007). Understanding Organized Crime. Jones & Bartlett Publishers. p. 67. ISBN 0-7637-4108-6.
- "International Narcotics Control Strategy Report – 2008". Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs. March 2008. Retrieved 11 April 2008.
- "Joaquin Guzman-Loera". Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs. Retrieved 11 April 2008.
- EndPlay (18 February 2015). "Heroin bringing violent Mexican drug cartels to Western..." KIRO. Retrieved 17 January 2017.
- "Zambada Plea Deal" (PDF).
- "United States of America v. Felipe de Jesus Corona Verbera" (PDF). United States Court of Appeals. 7 December 2007: 3. Cite journal requires
- "A Line in the Sand: Confronting the Threat at the Southwest Border" (PDF). Majority Staff of the House Committee on Homeland Security. 9 January 2008: 12, 13. Archived from the original (PDF) on 28 March 2008. Cite uses deprecated parameter
|deadurl=(help); Cite journal requires
- "Sinaloa Cartel Leader Possibly Dead". Newschannel 5 KRGV. 28 March 2008. Archived from the original on 28 September 2008. Retrieved 11 April 2008. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- Grayson, George W. (August 2007). "Mexico and the Drug Cartels". Foreign Policy Research Institute. Archived from the original on 9 March 2012. Retrieved 18 February 2018. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- "HSBC money-laundering scandal casts a cloud over Lord Green, the trade minister". London: the Daily Telegraph. 18 July 2012. Retrieved 25 January 2013.
- "Mexican drug gang killings surge". BBC News. 9 December 2008. Retrieved 15 May 2012.
- "U.S. Says Threat of Mexican Drug Cartels Approaching 'Crisis Proportions'". Fox News. 3 March 2009. Archived from the original on 18 May 2013. Retrieved 9 March 2009. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- "Treasury Designates Sinaloa Cartel Plaza Bosses". U.S. Department of the Treasury. Office of Foreign Assets Control. Retrieved 12 May 2013.
- Copeland, Larry; Johnson, Kevin (9 March 2009). "Mexican cartels plague Atlanta". USA Today. Retrieved 23 May 2010.
- "HSBC became bank to drug cartels, pays big for lapses". Reuters UK. Retrieved 12 July 2015.
- Elyssa Pachico. "Sinaloa Cartel Bought Narco Plane Via HSBC Bank". Retrieved 12 July 2015.
- Nathan Vardi (12 December 2012). "Forget The Drug Dealers And Iran, HSBC Is Having A Great Year". Forbes. Retrieved 12 July 2015.
- Castillo, Mariano (15 February 2013). "Chicago's new Public Enemy No. 1: 'El Chapo'". CNN. Retrieved 12 May 2013.
- Logan, Samuel. "Tracking the Sinaloa Federation's International Presence". InSight. InSight Crime. Archived from the original on 7 May 2013. Retrieved 12 May 2013. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- Morning Edition (17 September 2013). "Probing Ties Between Mexican Cartel And Chicago's Violence". NPR. Retrieved 12 October 2013.
- Suerte-Felipe, Cecille (27 December 2013). "Mexican drug cartel now in Phl – PDEA". The Philippine Star. Philstar. Retrieved 5 August 2016.
- Adel, Rosette (4 August 2016). "Mexico drug cartel actively operating in Philippines, says Duterte". The Philippine Star. Philstar. Retrieved 5 August 2016.
- Bencito, John Paolo (4 August 2016). "Du30 blast triad, drug cartel". Manila Standard. Retrieved 5 August 2016.
- "Esmas.com". Esmas.com. Archived from the original on 30 September 2012. Retrieved 15 May 2012. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- "Hundreds arrested in cross-country campaigns against cartel". Foxnews.com. 25 February 2009. Archived from the original on 29 April 2011. Retrieved 15 May 2012. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- "DEA arrests 750". Eluniversal.com.mx. Archived from the original on 18 March 2009. Retrieved 15 May 2012. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- Ellingwood, Ken (3 March 2009). "Mexico sending more forces to Ciudad Juárez". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 3 March 2009.
- "Chicago-Based Cell" (Press release). Chicago Field Office, FBI. 20 August 2009. Archived from the original on 29 November 2010. Retrieved 15 May 2012. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- "Treasury Designates Sinaloa Cartel Plaza Bosses" (Press release). United States Treasury Department. Retrieved 9 February 2017.
- "Suspect in Mexican Activist's Killing Arrested". Latin American Herald Tribune. Retrieved 9 February 2017.
- "High-ranking Sinaloa Cartel Member Admits To Drug Trafficking And Violence". U.S. Justice Department. Retrieved 9 February 2017.
- GMA News: "Mexican drug cartel penetrates PHL; PDEA raids lab in Lipa City" 26 December 2013
- Roebuck, Jeremy (9 March 2010). "Violence the result of fractured arrangement between Zetas and Gulf Cartel, authorities say". The Brownsville Herald. Retrieved 18 February 2018.
- "Polarization and Sustained Violence in Mexico's Cartel War". InterAmerican Security Watch. 26 January 2012. Archived from the original on 11 January 2014. Retrieved 9 March 2012. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- "'El Chapo' conspires with Chinese mafias to produce synthetic drugs in Latin America". Digital Military Magazine. 19 February 2014.
- "Chapo's rise: From poor, abused to cartel kingpin". USA Today. 28 February 2014. Retrieved 21 November 2017.
- Reel, Monte (3 August 2015). "Annals of Excavation: Underworld- How the Sinaloa Cartel digs its tunnels". The New Yorker. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
- Miller, Majorie (25 May 1993). "Mexico Cardinal Slain; Caught in Gun Battle : Violence: 6 others are killed at Guadalajara airport. Rival narcotics traffickers are believed responsible". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 30 November 2015.
- Rotella, Sebastian (20 September 1994). "2 San Diego Suspects in Cardinal's Slaying Ordered Extradited". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 30 November 2015.
- Rotella, Sebastian (19 June 1993). "U.S. Seizes Land at Border Near Unfinished Drug Tunnel : Narcotics: Agents believe San Diego lot was the destination of passage from Mexico. Investigators are seeking a Tijuana businessman who owned the parcel". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 30 November 2015.
- Rotella, Sebastian (4 June 1993). "DEA Couldn't Verify Tips on Drug Tunnel". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 9 October 2016.
- Mosendz, Polly (15 October 2015). "DRUG TUNNELS ALONG THE U.S.-MEXICO BORDER: HIGH COSTS, HIGH REWARDS". NEWSWEEK. Retrieved 9 October 2016.
- U-T San Diego (31 October 2013). "Border tunnels: Complete list of those found". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved 9 October 2016.
- Perez U., Matilde (17 June 2002). "Ejidatarios exigen pago justo por tierra expropiada en BC- El aeropuerto internacional de Tijuana ocupa la superficie". La Jornada. Retrieved 30 November 2015.
- Public Affairs, DEA (26 January 2006). "DEA/ICE Uncover "Massive" Cross-Border Drug Tunnel Cement lined passage thought to link warehouses in Tijuana and Otay Mesa". United States Drug Enforcement Administration. Archived from the original on 10 December 2015. Retrieved 7 December 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- Marosi, Richard (31 January 2006). "A Straight Shot Into ... Mexico'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 30 November 2015.
- Soto, Onell; Berestein, Leslie (27 January 2006). "2,400-foot tunnel 'beats them all'- Builders of passage were well-funded, investigators say". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved 30 November 2015.
- Soto, Onell; Berestein, Leslie (27 January 2006). "2,400-foot tunnel 'beats them all' -Builders of passage were well-funded, investigators say". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
- Newsroom, ICE (15 November 2011). "Major cross-border drug tunnel discovered south of San Diego". Department of Homeland Security. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Retrieved 8 December 2015.
- Castro, Rosario; Ramirez, Saul (13 July 2012). "Quitan túneles y droga a la mafia en BC-Decomisan 40 toneladas de marihuana". ZETA Tijuana. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
- Marosi, Richard (22 October 2015). "Raid on U.S.-Mexico drug tunnel: 22 arrests, at least 12 tons of pot seized". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
- Betanzos, Said (29 May 2015). "Hallan Otro Narcotunel Cerca del Aeropuerto". El Mexicano. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
- "Second Major Cross-Border Drug Tunnel Discovered South of San Diego This Month- Investigators seize 32 tons of marijuana, arrest 6 suspects". United States Drug Enforcement Administration. 30 November 2011. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
- Dibble, Sandra (30 November 2011). "Elaborate drug tunnel yields record pot seizure- More than 32 tons recovered in the United States and Mexico". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
- "El túnel de México a EU para transportar droga tenía un elevador y rieles". CNN Mexico. 30 November 2011. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
- McDonnell, Patrick; Linthicum, Kate; Wilber, Del Quentin (19 January 2017). "Drug lord 'El Chapo' extradited to the U.S." Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
- Woody, Christopher. "Mexican authorities busted 2 more cross-border tunnels possibly built by the Sinaloa cartel". BusinessInsider.com. Business Insider. Retrieved 21 November 2017.
- Bacon, John (14 December 2016). "Sophisticated drug cartel tunnel from San Diego to Mexico found". USA Today. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
- Moran, Greg; Dibble, Sandra (22 June 2017). "Woman linked to cartel kingpin 'El Chapo' arrested at San Diego border, charged in drug conspiracy". San Diego Union Trinune. Retrieved 18 January 2018.
- "Mexico's Drug War: A Rigged Fight?". NPR.org. 19 May 2010. Retrieved 14 September 2014.
- Burnett, John; Peñaloza, Marisa; Benincasa, Robert (19 May 2010). "Mexico Seems To Favor Sinaloa Cartel In Drug War". NPR.org. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
- Roston, Aram (1 January 2012). "'El Chapo' Guzman, Mexico's Most Powerful Drug Lord". Newsweek.
- Gómora, Doris (6 January 2014). "La guerra Secreta de la DEA En Mexico". Business Insider.
- Kelley, Michael (13 January 2014). "CONFIRMED: The DEA Struck A Deal With Mexico's Most Notorious Drug Cartel". Business Insider.
- Kelley, Michael (1 October 2012). "Mexican Diplomat Says America Pretty Much Invited The Sinaloa Drug Cartel Across The Border". Business Insider.
- Arsenault, Chris (24 July 2012). "Mexican official: CIA 'manages' drug trade". Al Jazeera.
- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e1zh2DcPp4Y BBC Mexico's Drug War video on YouTube
- Cosentino, Elena. "The making of... Secrets of Mexico's Drug War". BBC News. Retrieved 12 March 2015.
- "Secrets of Mexico's Drug War". BBC News. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
- Gray, Mike (2000). Drug Crazy: How We Got Into This Mess and How We Can Get Out. Routledge. p. 136. ISBN 0-415-92647-5.
- DePalma, Anthony (2001). Here: A Biography of the New American Continent. PublicAffairs. p. 23. ISBN 1-891620-83-5.
- Warnock, John W. (1995). The Other Mexico: The North American Triangle Completed. Black Rose Books Ltd. p. 230. ISBN 1-55164-028-7.
- "Tijuana Cartel Profile".
- "Mexico's 7 Most Notorious Drug Cartels".
- "Mexico's Drug War: Sinaloa Federation".
- Samuels, Lennox (21 March 2006). "Lieutenant in Mexican drug cartel a wanted man". Dallas Morning News. Retrieved 11 April 2008.
- "Mexico arrests 'drug lord' Edgar Valdez". BBC News. 31 August 2010. Retrieved 31 August 2010.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Sinaloa Cartel.|
|Wikinews has related news: Tourists evacuated following shootout between Mexican army and drug hitmen|
- Sinaloa Cartel profile on InSight Crime
- Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman-Loera on America's Most Wanted
- Jose Espinoza—The "Leonardo da Vinci" of the Sinaloa Cartel—San Francisco Chronicle—1 November 2009:
- Why Mexico's Sinaloa Cartel Loves Selling Drugs in Chicago, Chicago magazine, October 2013
- Money laundering takedown