Who are the new narcos in Mexico

“The new drug lords speak English, wear glasses and are experts in marketing,” says Roberto Saviano

Mexico.- After the extradition to the United States of Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán Loera, the boss of one of the most powerful drug cartels in the world, that of Sinaloa, ended up in Mexico for a time, as the writer Roberto Saviano said.

The Italian journalist, writer, and essayist gave an interview to Infobae where he explained that the era of drug lords like ‘El Chapo’ is over and what time there is a new generation, whom they call discreet and refined, but no less bloodthirsty.

Roberto Saviano is the author of the books “Gomorrah” and “Zero Zero Zero“, in which he touches the insides of the Italian mafia.

Photo: Twitter

Roberto Saviano explained in the interview that  “the great families of Mexican drug trafficking have made their children study at American and European universities, they have become economists, marketing experts.”


Roberto Saviano explained that since 2009 a new class of drug lords has emerged: the so-called “narco juniors”, descendants of the pioneers of the business, most of them countrymen, with refined tastes, with studies abroad and who wear designer clothes.

In 2009 they managed to capture Vicente Zambada Niebla, “El Vicentillo”, son of “El Mayo” Zambada, one of the three founders of the Sinaloa Cartel. What caused the greatest impact on public opinion was not the feat of the federal forces, but the appearance of the detainee, who was presented with gray-blue cashmere trousers, a shirt with white-brown and sky blue vertical stripes, unbuttoned to show off chest hair and a black jacket that was speculated for days because it was presumed to be from the Armani brand.

Vicente Zambada Niebla

The writer recalled that Vicente Carrillo Leyva, son of Amado Carrillo “El Señor de los Cielos”, of the Juarez Cartel, was arrested. The detainee studied at private universities in Switzerland and Spain. His look was again the subject of comments, as the authority presented him in a fine white sports set.

Vicente Carrillo Leyva

Another example that Roberto Saviano gave Infobae is one of the sons of “El Chapo”, Alfredo Guzmán, who, as described by actor Sean Penn in Rolling Stone magazine, is handsome, well dressed and wears a wristwatch that could have more value than all the money held by the central banks of some countries.

Alfredo Guzman

From the plaid shirt to the white collar 

“They no longer wear cowboy boots or plaid shirt like their parents, rather they wear the white shirt, jacket, fashionable shirts, the intellectual glasses. They speak English fluently. They are the managers, the white collars of the drug trade. They know how to launder money in the financial system, they know how to manage ‘the family business’, “said the writer.

Photo: Twitter

 “With these new features, combined with the codes of criminal organizations (which they must not forget if they do not want to lose themselves in modernity), they can become powerful leaders,” Saviano said in a questionnaire sent via email.

The sons of “El Chapo”, Iván Archivaldo and Alfredo, fit into this new prototype of the mafia boss, said the writer. 

The writer states that now that his father has been extradited, it would be natural for them to take over the reins of the cartel, but Saviano considered that they do not seem to have “the maturity” to take the leadership of the organization in which they have participated for some time, despite the fact that neither of them reaches 35 years of age.

The Guzmán brothers.

Saviano pointed out that “the chapitos” grew up among luxuries, protected and have everything within their reach, but to assume the leadership of the organization, they need “the hunger that fueled their parents’ success. 

“El Chapo”.

And after “El Chapo”? 

After the extradition of Joaquín Loera Guzmán, ‘El Chapo’ Guzmán, all hope was lost that he was the most wanted and important leader and drug trafficker in the country and abroad.

Many rumors have been triggered after the capo who was the leader of the Sinaloa Cartel was arrested, along with his operational arms: Ismael el Mayo Zambada García ‘El Mayo’ and Juan José Esparragoza ‘El Azul’.

Photo: Twitter

Also within the structure are Iván Archivaldo and Jesús Alfredo Guzmán Salazar, two of Joaquín’s sons who seek the leadership of the organization.

Despite believing that the Sinaloa Cartel was so strong that it could continue to operate even without its leader, Joaquín Guzmán, factors such as the change of governors in a large part of the country’s states, the strengthening of the Jalisco Nueva Generaión cartel (CJNG ), the humiliating way in which the government made its third capture with a dirty T-shirt after trying to escape through the drain, its complaints about the harassment of one of the custodians, and above all the threat of the Jalisco cartel to remain as the most powerful group in Mexico, have made that hypothesis disappear.

There is even talk that the era of ‘El Chapo Guzmán’ has ended.

“Joaquín Guzmán in the balance of drug trafficking no longer represented anything. The cartel had already processed his separation since he escaped the first time -in 2001-. The job of managing such a complex organization, persecuted by the authority, made it difficult to make the important decisions, “said Javier Oliva Posada, a researcher at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM).

El Chapo’s son.

There is talk not only of a decline of the man who was the most powerful, and produced annual profits of up to 3 million dollars, but they even mention it as ‘a danger to the cartel’.

Although the sons of Joaquín Guzmán are taking over from him, Gerardo Rodríguez Sánchez Lara, an expert on security issues, affirmed that Guzmán’s heirs “are going to have to decide if they are going to enter fully into a dispute over the leadership of the cartel. even with the expenses and the risk of the legal process of the father in the United States, which is not going to be cheap at all. “

Loera Guzmán, was extradited in the middle of a surprise action just a few hours after the inauguration of the new US president Donald Tump, which promises a clash with Mexico, and it has been considered that he was placed ‘on a silver platter’, a submission of the Mexican government to the magnate, to calm the waters a bit after Trump’s total rejection of the Mexican country.

But the reorganization of the country’s cartels caused the wave of violence to take the leadership, there is even talk that in the period of 2016, 3, 349 more deaths have been confirmed than in 2015, that 18,915 murders were registered, according to figures of the Secretary of the National Public Security System (SESNSP).

The case is summarized, in that now Joaquín Guzmán, leaves the crown of the leader, and begins to be a danger for the drug cartels in Mexico, since they fear that he will reach agreements with the Anti-Drug Agency, where he reveals information that could go as far as destroying the Mexican cartels, in exchange for protection for his family instead of his associates, or a reduction in his sentence.

Juan José Esparragoza ‘El Azul’. Photo: Infoabe

“He will protect his family and the negotiation with the Trump government will be to reveal important information about his close circle in exchange for a shorter sentence and the protection of his children – who are on the list of the most wanted by the United States. – and this could change the entire configuration of the cartel, “explained Guadalupe Correa Cabrera, associate professor at the University of Texas.

“The reorganization of the drug cartels and the diversification of their businesses turned the streets of the country into the scene of the war from which only the CJNG and Sinaloa emerged victorious. The rearrangements in the Sinaloa cartel may bring new battles to the interior of the The same cartel and of them against Jalisco, which in recent months has taken away drug trafficking routes in the Pacific area , “said the expert.

Ismael Zambada García ‘El Mayo’. Photo: Infoabe

For Antônio Sampaio, an expert on security issues at the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), the extradition is the end of all hope that once again ‘El Chapo’ will once again be at the head of the criminal organization.

No one knows if after Guzmán’s extradition there will be more or less violence due to the power suit, but it is certain that the characters in the era of drug trafficking are about to change. 

Source: infobae.com, debate.com.mx

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