For 13 years, Mexico’s most powerful drug kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman lived on the run, staying well ahead of authorities. But it was one slipup — an associate of his being caught on a wiretap — that led to his capture on February 22, 2014.
Mexican Marines had located Joaquin Guzman in a condominium complex and quickly surrounded the area. Before sunrise, at around 5am, marines smashed open the door to his fourth floor condo, seizing Guzman without a shot fired. But that was just the start. Guzman utilized sophisticated communications equipment and scanners to detect surveillance. But it was his last ditch low-tech underground tunnel that helped him almost get away again.
Guzman fled south to Mazatlan. On his heels, a team of U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agents set up a base of operations with Mexican marines in the city, according to the current U.S. law-enforcement official. Early Saturday morning, Guzman’s reign came to an end without a shot fired. Marines closed the beachside road in front of the Miramar condominiums, a 10-story, pearl-coloured building with white balconies overlooking the Pacific and a small pool in front.
Mexican Marines allowed Reuters photographer Daniel Becerril to document what they found. With the Marines as guides, Daniel Becerril shows us what those tunnels were like:
A Mexican marine lifts a bathtub that leads to a tunnel and exits in the city’s drainage system at one of the houses of Joaquin ‘Chapo’ Guzman in Culiacan.
A steel ladder leads to the bottom of a removable bathtub that gave access to Guzman to move in and move out.
The bottom of a removable bathtub which leads to the city’s drainage system in Culiacan
It’s an incredibly extensive network.