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Drug Enforcement Agency declares El Chapo’s Cartel the greatest criminal drug threat to the U.S

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El Chapo

The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) has disclosed that Mexico’s Sinaloa Cartel is the greatest criminal threat to the United States despite its notorious leader Joaquín ‘El Chapo’ Guzmán serving a life sentence.

In its 2019 National Drug Threat Assessment report released on Thursday, the Drug Enforcement Agency found that the criminal syndicate, founded in 1988, ‘maintains the most expansive footprint in the United States’.

The study found that El Chapo’s old cartel is among the Mexican groups that pose ‘the greatest criminal drug threat to the United States’ and that there are no other organizations in the distance that are ‘positioned to challenge them’.

“The Sinaloa Cartel maintains the most expansive footprint in the United States,’ the report stated. ‘While the Jalisco New Generation Cartel [Cartel Jalisco Nueva Generación or CJNG] has become the second-most dominant domestic presence over the past few years.”

El Chapo’s cartel, which is one of the oldest trafficking organizations in Mexico, remains a strong presence in the United States. They still have the ‘most expansive international footprint’ compared to its rivals back home.

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His son Iván Archivaldo Guzmán and two of his brothers Ovidio Guzmán López and Jesus Alfredo Guzmán known as ‘Los Chapitos’ are responsible for keeping the organization as the U.S. top fentanyl smuggler.

They are all wanted by U.S. authorities, along with Ismael ‘El Mayo’ Zambada-Garcia, who helped the jailed drug lord establish the organization and is on the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s [FBI] most wanted list.

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The agency also revealed in the report that illegal sale of drugs in the U.S. generates tens of billions of dollars and the Sinaloa Cartel rakes at least $11 billion a year through its shipments of fentanyl, cocaine, marijuana, heroin, and methamphetamine across the borders in California, Arizona, New Mexico, and West Texas before the drugs are diverted to its distribution centres in Phoenix, Los Angeles, Denver, Atlanta, and Chicago.

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In July 2019, El Chapo was sentenced to life in prison plus 30 years and also ordered to pay the U.S. government $12.9 billion.

Crime

JUST IN: Ritualists arrested over Ibadan killings

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Some suspected ritualists have been arrested by the police for the serial killings in Akinyele area of Ibadan, The Nation has learnt.

The Special Adviser to Governor Seyi Makinde on Security, Mr Fatai Owoseni, disclosed this while addressing a town hall meeting in Akinyele on Wednesday.

The meeting was organized by a private radio station JAMZ 100.1 FM.

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Owoseni said the suspects would soon be paraded by the Oyo State Police Command.

He said:

“Even though there is no town where there is no sin, I can assure you as I speak that the perpetrators of the killings in Akinyele have been apprehended.

“As of yesterday, the criminals have been apprehended and the Commissioner of a Police would possibly hold a press conference today. But I can specifically tell you that the person behind it has taken police to the ritualists and they are now behind the bars.”

Owoseni emphasized the need for residents to be security conscious, stressing that everyone has a role to play in securing communities.

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Five people had been hacked to death in strange situations in the community in the last two months.

They included a 29-year old expectant mother, two undergraduates and a child.

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Crime

Detectives search Magu’s house as probe continues

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Magu high-profile looters

Detectives on Tuesday searched the personal house of the embattled Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Ibrahim Magu.

The EFCC boss is under investigation by an Administrative Panel, headed by Justice Isa Ayo Salami, a former president of the Court of Appeal.

He appeared at the panel on Tuesday for the second day.

It was learnt that the detectives combed Magu’s house in Karu on the outskirts of Abuja at about 7 pm.

A source said: “About 10 detectives in four vehicles went to Magu’s personal house in Karu, a clustered suburb of Abuja.

They met some aides and guards. They said they came to search the house but the aides and security guards resisted them.

“When they insisted that they were acting on intelligence, the security guards and aides called Magu’s wife on the telephone and she directed them to allow the detectives access.

“They conducted the search unhindered. They did not find anything in the house. They wrote a report which was countersigned by one of the aides.

“The same team got in touch with Magu’s wife that it would search Magu’s Maitama official quarters. As a family, we have cooperated with the detectives. And as at 9.30m, the family was waiting for the detectives.

“But we believe that the head of the house ought to be around during the search to avoid misrepresentation.”

There were indications on Tuesday that the findings of the Salami Administrative Panel will guide the final decision by President Muhammadu Buhari on Magu’s fate.

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The President engaged the Justice Salami panel to enable him have a broader perspective on the allegations against Magu by Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice Abubakar Malami (SAN).

The source said:

“The President is only awaiting Salami panel’s report before taking his decision. He wants to be fair to all parties.

“He does not want any ad hoc approach to the allegations, he has directed the committee to give him a comprehensive report. The anti-corruption agenda is crucial to the administration of President Buhari, he will not want it derailed.

“And the choice of Justice Salami was strategic because he is a man who will dispense justice without fear or favour.”

Another government source said:

“Magu’s matter is still unfolding, it is too early to make any categorical comment. I think we should allow some time.”

For the second day, the EFCC chairman appeared before the Presidential Committee to clarify some of the issues raised against him.

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After Monday’s interaction, Magu was not allowed to go home. He was detained at the Force Criminal Investigation Department (FCID).

Magu arrived at the Banquet Wing of the Presidential Villa at about 9 am and left for his detention facility on Tuesday around 8 pm after another round of questioning.

A source said:

I think the scope of the allegations is being expanded. Some issues were raised on Monday on the report of the Presidential Audit Committee; the EFCC Audit Report yet to be signed; and Magu’s relationship with some persons.

“The Acting EFCC chairman also went with his lawyer and he came out of the sitting after 8 pm.

Already, three candidates have been shortlisted should it become necessary to replace Magu. Two of them are Commissioners of Police.

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A source said:

“The three candidates have been profiled by the relevant security agencies. Buhari’s decision on Magu will determine who gets the job.”

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Crime

Mother of two stabbed to death by her husband in Jigawa

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A mother of two, Hauwa Sani, has been stabbed to death by her husband of eight years, Abdul Hassan in Jahun Local Government Area of Jigawa State.

Confirming the incident to newsmen, the spokesperson for the State Police Command, Abdul Jinjiri, said Hassan stabbed Hauwa eight times with a knife which led to her death on July 3.

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According to Jinjiri, preliminary investigation revealed that the suspect acted based on the influence of drugs as he has been addicted to substance abuse for a long time.

Jinjiri said Hassan fled the scene after committing the crime but was later arrested and will be arraigned in court soon.

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