A Sinaloa Cartel faction led by the sons of imprisoned drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán has banned the manufacturing and sale of fentanyl in Sinaloa, in keeping with banners that appeared within the northern state on Monday.
Machine-printed “narco-banners” containing a message that allegedly comes from the notoriously violent “Los Chapitos” faction of the highly effective cartel have been hung from bridges and overpasses within the municipalities of Culiacán, Mazatlán, Guamúchil and Ahome.
“The sale, manufacture, transportation or any form of enterprise involving the substance referred to as fentanyl, together with the sale of chemical merchandise for its manufacturing, is strictly prohibited in Sinaloa,” learn the banners that ended with “Att:Chapitos” or “Sincerely, Chapitos.”
The banners stated the ban on fentanyl-related enterprise was “because of the incessant disinformation from some media retailers and the clear failure of presidency by not investigating and pursuing these actually accountable for this epidemic.”
In addition they stated that Los Chapitos – who been recognized as main suppliers of fentanyl to america – have by no means been concerned within the fentanyl enterprise nor ever can be, and warned the general public to “watch out for the results” of not abiding by the ban on the sale and manufacturing of the artificial opioid, which is the main reason behind drug overdose deaths in america.
Sinaloa Lawyer Common Sara Bruna Quiñonez stated Monday that authorities have been conducting an investigation to find out who put the banners on public show. She asserted that the message was directed to the state authorities, however didn’t say why she believed that was the case.
The looks of the banners got here nearly six months after america Division of Justice unsealed drug trafficking and different costs in opposition to greater than 20 Sinaloa Cartel members and associates, together with Los Chapitos: Ovidio Guzmán López, Jesús Alfredo Guzmán Salazar, Iván Archivaldo Guzmán Sálazar and Joaquín Guzmán López.
An indictment in opposition to the 4 brothers stated their purpose was to provide huge quantities of fentanyl and promote it at low costs. Prosecutors stated they make large earnings even after they promote tablets at a wholesale costs of simply 50 cents per unit as a result of manufacturing is so low-cost.
Ovidio was detained in Culiacán in January and extradited to america final month to face costs together with drug trafficking and cash laundering. The U.S. is providing giant rewards for info that results in the seize of the opposite three males.
The Guzmán brothers beforehand denied their involvement within the illicit fentanyl enterprise in a rambling four-page letter despatched to the Mexican media outlet Milenio in Could.
“We have now by no means produced, manufactured or commercialized fentanyl or any of its derivatives,” they stated within the letter, whose authenticity was confirmed by a lawyer for Los Chapitos.
“We’re victims of persecution and have been made into scapegoats,” they claimed.
Culiacán-based information web site Ríodoce reported in June that Los Chapitos had instructed fentanyl producers within the state capital to cease making the drug. Not lengthy after that, “our bodies have been found of males who had been tortured and had fentanyl tablets dumped on them, in an obvious sign to others,” Reuters reported.
Regardless of that, two former Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) officers aren’t shopping for the Guzmán brothers’ newest declare that they’re cracking down on the illicit fentanyl enterprise.
“I feel the Chapitos began feeling the stress after they elevated the reward for his or her seize. I feel they’re attempting to create an enormous phantasm to take the stress off,” stated Mike Vigil, former head of worldwide operations for the DEA.
“It’s nearly like a giant marketing campaign to persuade the U.S. they’re not concerned. It’s nothing greater than pure propaganda,” he instructed the Related Press.
Vigil stated there’s strong proof that “Sinaloa is the most important producer of fentanyl in Mexico” and asserted that the cartel received’t cease producing the drug as a result of it’s “their huge cash maker.”
He additionally stated that the broader Sinaloa Cartel “wouldn’t associate with” any plan to cease its involvement within the fentanyl enterprise. Reuters reported that it was unclear whether or not Los Chapitos might implement a ban on fentanyl-related enterprise throughout Sinaloa on condition that Ismael “El Mayo” Zambada, one other Sinaloa Cartel chief, has felony management of a lot of the state.
Leo Silva, a former DEA agent who labored in Mexico, stated that the doubtless goal of the banners was to shift blame for fentanyl manufacturing.
“It’s a ploy to take the warmth off of them,” he instructed Reuters.
“I don’t see them stopping manufacturing. It’s an excessive amount of cash to show down or flip their again on,” Silva stated.
Combating fentanyl manufacturing and trafficking is a prime precedence within the bilateral agenda of Mexico and america. The problem is ready to be a central focus of the Mexico-U.S. Excessive Stage Safety Dialogue to be held in Mexico Metropolis this Thursday.
Fentanyl tablets are produced in clandestine labs in Mexico utilizing precursor chemical compounds shipped to Pacific coast ports from Asian international locations, particularly China, in keeping with Mexican and U.S. authorities.
DEA Administrator Anne Milgram says that the Sinaloa Cartel and the Jalisco New Era Cartel pose “the best felony risk america has ever confronted” given the big portions of fentanyl and different narcotics they ship to the U.S.
Earlier this yr, President López Obrador wrote to Chinese language President Xi Jinping to hunt his help within the battle in opposition to the artificial opioid that was accountable for some 75,000 deaths in america final yr.
A Chinese language International Ministry spokesperson subsequently stated that “there isn’t a such factor as unlawful trafficking of fentanyl between China and Mexico.”
With stories from Infobae, AP and Reuters