Mexico's Sinaloa drug chief Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman arrested

WASHINGTON - The man who eluded Mexican authorities for 13 years looked pudgy, bowed and middle-aged as he was marched by masked marines across a tarmac to a helicopter waiting to whisk him to jail.
 
Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman appeared in a mere handful of photos during his years on the run, staring straight into the camera of an anonymous photographer and defiantly brandishing an automatic rifle in images taken in the mountains of western Mexico and published by local media.
 
On Saturday, hours after his arrest, he wore a white button-down shirt and beltless black jeans as a marine paraded him handcuffed before the press, one with a gloved hand on the drug lord's neck, pushing his head down as if to make clear that he was now under state control.

A photo from immediately after his capture shows some of his injuries on his face and shoulder, indicating he likely put up a fight.

"He survived the arrest," said David Shirk, a professor at the University of San Diego and an expert in cross-border relations. "He was clearly taken by surprise, taken in a way that authorities were able to capture him alive and that was not an easy feat."

Guzman, the head of Mexico's Sinaloa Cartel, was captured overnight by U.S. and Mexican authorities at a hotel in Mazatlan, Mexico. 

Attorney General Eric Holder says the capture is a "landmark achievement."

Holder says in a statement that the arrest of the Sinaloa cartel drug chief is a "victory for the citizens of both Mexico and the United States." The attorney general says Guzman directed a criminal enterprise that contributed to the death and destruction of millions of lives around the world through drug addiction, violence and corruption.

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson calls the arrest a "milestone" in law enforcement efforts to fight drug trafficking along the border.

Shirk says even without Guzman, the cartel will do business as usual.

"And we'll continue to see, I think, some accommodation and shifts in Mexican crime but the number one thing we can anticipate is that the drugs will keep coming," he said.

Shirk added, "The big question … is will he escape from custody again?" He masterfully escaped back in the late 1990s from Mexican prison and I think Mexican authorities will have to keep him under very close scrutiny and control."

Guzman faces multiple federal drug trafficking indictments in the U.S. and is on the Drug Enforcement Administration's most-wanted list. His drug empire stretches throughout North America and reaches as far away as Europe and Australia. His cartel has been heavily involved in the bloody drug war that has torn through parts of Mexico for the last several years.

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