Critics of Mexican President Felipe Calderón and his so-called Drug War charge that the government is favoring the Sinaloa Cartel.
“There are no important detentions of Sinaloa cartel members,” Diego Osorno, an investigative journalist and the author of a book on the Sinaloa Cartel (El Cártel de Sinaloa: Una historia del uso político del narco, Grijalbo, México 2009), told AlJazeera. “But the government is hunting down [Sinaloa's] adversary groups [and] new players in the world of drug trafficking.”
Edgardo Buscaglia, a leading Mexican law professor and an international organized crime expert, has analyzed 50,000 drug-related arrest documents dating back to 2003, and said that only a small fraction of the them were against Sinaloa Cartel operatives, and low-level ones at that.
“Law enforcement shows you objectively that the federal government has been hitting the weakest organized crime groups in Mexico. The Familia Michoacana, mainly, Tijuana, Ciudad Juarez,” he told AlJazeera. “But they have not been hitting the main organized crime group, the Sinaloa federation, that is responsible for 45% of the drug trade in this country.”
Joaquin Guzmán AKA “El Chapo”—one of the world’s most wanted criminals—runs the Sinaloa Cartel. Arrested in Guatemala in the 1990s and transferred to a maximum security prison in Mexico, Guzmán escaped in 2001 and has amassed a $1 billion fortune trafficking cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine.