Blog dedicated to reporting on Mexican drug cartels
on the border line between the US and Mexico

Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Jalisco's Puente Grande: Prison made famous by El Chapo's laundry basket escaped closes its doors

 Chivis Martinez Borderland Beat  La Silla Rota

Famous for the ‘laundry basket’ escape of the leader of the Sinaloa cartel, Joaquín '' El Chapo '' Guzmán Loera, this Monday the closure of the Federal Center for Social Readaptation Number 2 West, better known as the Puente Grande prison was announced.

The divestiture of that prison was published in the Official Gazette of the Federation (DOF) and is effective as of this day. "People deprived of liberty housed in the Federal Center for Social Readaptation number 2 Occidente will be transferred to the federal centers for social rehabilitation determined by the Commissioner for Prevention and Social Rehabilitation, who will carry out the necessary actions and procedures, respecting their human rights", highlighted the Secretary of Security and Citizen Protection in the document.

The closing agreement was signed by Alfonso Durazo, Secretary of Security and Citizen Protection, who will determine the final destination of the real estate that the criminal. According to what is published in the DOF, the prison workers will be relocated to other federal penitentiary centers determined by the Commissioner for Prevention and Social Rehabilitation, according to the needs of the Institution's service. 

The concrete fortress located on the free highway to Zapotlanejo, in Jalisco, was the second federal prison of its kind, which followed the architectural and disciplinary model of the maximum-security prison of Almoloya de Juárez, in the State of Mexico.

The prison complex is made up of the state prison and the federal maximum-security prison. The prison was inaugurated in 2013.

It is designed for 1,700 people at its maximum capacity.


The Puente Grande prison is known for housing inmates considered highly dangerous.

The most famous was "El Chapo”, who managed to escape from the center considered maximum security in 2001 using a laundry cart and a strong network of complicities inside and outside the prison.

Currently in Puente Grande are held Miguel Felix Gallardo, better known as "The Jefe of Jefes', leader of the Guadalajara cartel. Félix Gallardo was arrested in 1989 for the crimes of homicide, crimes against health and bribery.

Just in 2017, 37 years were imposed for the murder, in 1985, of the former DEA agent, Enrique Camarena Salazar and the Mexican pilot Alfredo Zavala Avelar.

Other famous of Puente Grande: Jesús Alfredo Beltrán Guzmán, ''El Mochomito'', son of the head of the Beltrán Leyva cartel. "El Mochomito" is pointed out as the author of the attack against the mother of "El Chapo" and the kidnapping of Iván Archivaldo and Alfredo Guzmán Salazar, sons of the leader of the Sinaloa cartel.

Also in Puente Grande cells was Rafael Caro Quintero nicknamed The Narco de Narcos, founder of the Guadalajara cartel. Indicated accused of various crimes such as organized crime and drug trafficking and for the murder of the former DEA agent, Enrique ´Kiki´ Camarena Salazar and his pilot, Alfredo Avelar, in 1985.

Another “guest” of Puente Grande was Juan Pedro Saldívar Farías , known as El Z-27 , he was arrested in October 2013 in the municipality of San Nicolás de los Garza, Nuevo León, identified as the alleged regional chief of Los Zetas in Tamaulipas.

Another behind the bars of this maximum security prison is Vicente Carrillo Fuentes, El Viceroy, who was captured on October 9, 2014 and it is unknown what other prison he will be transferred to.

The prison in addition to housing drug lords, one of its inmates was Sandra Ávila Beltrán known as "The Queen of the Pacific", considered the most famous drug trafficker in the country.

Her stay was short and then she was transferred to prisons in the United States and in 2013 she returned to Mexico to be admitted to a prison in Nayarit. In 2015, Miguel Ángel Gallardo Félix's niece regained her freedom.


In June of this year, the technical director of the prison Marco Alberto Corona Baltazar was assassinated. Corona Baltazar was pursued by several men aboard other vehicles, from where they shot him, when the prison official was driving on the highway to El Salto, very close to the junction with the free highway to Zapotlanejo, in Jalisco.

The technical director served in various positions and had recently been appointed as head of office of the General Directorate while  Salvador Almonte Solís, recovers after being infected with covid-19.

In addition, on May 22, the Puente Grande prison was the scene of a fight that left seven dead, nine injured and five arrested, the State Prosecutor's Office reported. In the prison, several leaders of organized crime have died, in 2019 Heleno Madrigal Virrueta , alias “El 20”, was found dead in his cell , identified as the alleged CJNG chief for the southern coast of the state.

Gerardo Mendoza Chávez and Adrián Gómez Meza died in 2018. The first, who died on May 13, was identified as a drug manufacturer and as the alleged mastermind of the assassination of former Colima governor Silverio Cavazos Ceballos in 2010. Gómez Meza was found dead on July 10, 2018, he had been apprehended for allegedly serving as one of the accountants for the Cartel Jalisco Nueva Generación.

                                                            Gordo May of Los Zetas


The covid-19 pandemic also reached the prison when in May the disease affected more than 100 inmates, which led to visiting restrictions, and caused constant mobilizations of inmates.  

[Moisés Escamilla May, "El Gordo May" Zetas, died from Covid 19 in May of this year while at the prison]

Later, the visits of the relatives and lawyers of the inmates were renewed, but they were partial, less than a third of the regular visitors per day. Derived from the pandemic, the State Secretariat of Health was forced, under protection, to carry out 500 tests on federal inmates, but the process did not conclude. 151 positive cases and 110 people free of infection were reported, according to the latest report, 38 positive cases were subsequently confirmed, between inmates and staff. There were nine deaths from covid-19 in Puente Grande.

"When I read that the Penal of Puente Grande shut, gave me great pleasure," agrees J. Jesús Lemus, a journalist who spent three years and five days in one of the toughest prisons in the country. In 2008, when he was reporting the Rojo Nota in Michoacán, he was kidnapped, tortured and about to be murdered were it not for a report from Reporters Without Borders about his kidnapping.

Instead, J. Jesús was presented before the media, unfairly accused of drug trafficking, he was a " narco-doorman."

Lemus, he assures, was arrested as the revenge of Felipe Calderón, as he was investigating the ties of the then-president's family with drug trafficking. After his arrest and after spending a few hours in the Puentecillas Prison, in Guanajuato, a judge ordered his transfer to Puente Grande, in Jalisco.

There, Lemus lived what he himself describes as a hell, an extermination center, the icon of institutional perversity to violate Human Rights . In interview with La Silla Rota, the journalist remembers what it was like to be inside the Penal of Puente Gra.

Read the full article here from Lemus


  1. What are they going to do with the prison guards, cooks they will be out of a job.

    1. Hahaha over populated prisons coming up somewhere!

    2. They will join the local cartels, easy

  2. Animo Sicarios !

    EL Señor Guzman escape from Puente Grande was amazing . Better than escape from Alcatraz !
    El Patron was always a fan of Shawshank Redemption movie although his escape was engineered by an ex KGB agent he was inspired by the movie

    New People 006

    1. New people are trash. Los Linces, now those guys are the real deal

    2. Your padrino Dámaso was not ex KGB.

  3. Chapo is the only leader to ever escape twice from max security prisons..especially altiplano thats Mexicos most secure supposidely. What a boss! I dont wana hear nothin...nobody else has done that. Gangster shit right there. Cry me a river cjng groupies. 😂🤣🤣

    1. Yea he “escaped“ because he was cooperating and giving info to the Mex and US give about AFO and other enemies. What’s gangster about that? Plus that went down the toilet when he was crying on tv lmao

    2. Chapo had more fame then truth you do realize there atleast 5 Mexican capos that are dead men and they are alive some probably died of old age not counting mayo guy

    3. MENCHO shot it out WITH the MARINA and shot DOWN TWO helicopters and made guanajuato, JALISCO,michoacan and COLIMA feel the tension of trying to catch him. He actually got CAPTURED in COLIMA but DIDN'T make it to prison..
      Any PENDEJO can get CAPTURED THREE times and go to prison.. 😆
      it takes a DIFFERENT type of CAPO to not make it there 😆

    4. No one comes close to Pablo he built his own prison. Keep hating on CJNG as they keep taking plazas from cds

    5. 12:38 PM Where is he now? His rat as had special treatment that is how he was able to do things others weren't.

  4. Followers: My aunt was given last rights at 11PM. My family and I do not agree with the doctors, perhaps wishful thinking, that she will never wake up. This experience has been horrific and eye opening about the medical treatment of the elderly, most old folks don't have strong advocates like me and my family at their side.

    thank you for the kind messages you have sent. This is tough. Death is expected, we are all dying, but this experience needs to be highlighted somewhere in the press because it is, I am sure, not atypical, it is just wrong.😢

    1. Sorry to hear what your going through...Steve Lopez a famous writer for Los Angeles Times wrote a few articles re: treatment of his father and mother, through the hospital system and hospice.
      Al of LA

    2. I will ck it out...but this is not about treatment per se,
      it is about how she was drugged and ordered into hospice by a doctor who never had seen her. long story

    3. Fuerza para tu Tía para que siga luchando y a ti Sra Chivis y demás familiares porque ustedes no se pueden vencer. Así es en el hospital, te dicen que no hay nada que hacer y que los van a desconectar pero ustedes no se dejen hasta que en verdad llegue su final. Este año es para el olvido con pura tristeza y maldad, su puto Covid 19 y demás pendejadas! Una oración y fuerza


    4. Dear Chivis
      My prayers are with your Aunt as well as yourself and your family.
      Thank you for all your hard work 😓 during such a difficult time in your personal life

    5. sorry for your loss. truth is doctors are instructed to not get involved they will ignore it and leave it tto the next doctor to treat. they due that to avoid medical malpractice and because sometimes the insurance wont cover it or they are not allowed to request certain test or expensive treatment for the poor. the state will rather save money and let the poor and old die. doctors are no longer hands on they sit in front of a computer and the computer tells them what to do and what medication to give its a joke. medical for the poor and medicare for the old is a joke. they will ignore your symptoms and give u pain medication and tell u everything is fine. that what they did to one of my aunts. she was sick and in pain those fake doctors were telling her she is fine its all in her head. she was lucky because her kids have money and they all paid she went out of pocket to real doctors mayo clinic and they found she had cancer and she was able to beat it.
      alot of hispanics that rely on clinics and deal with fake doctors aka nurse practitioners are getting horrible treatment and dying. private insurance is the way to go but it depends on the doctor and ur coverage.
      you should sue for medical malpractice. a very famous chicano rapper producer died recently a week and a half ago his name was slowpain he had health problems for acouple years and doctor said he had bad liver they misdiagnosed him for years. he got sick and thought it was covid he went to the hospital er they ran test negative for covid but doctors told him theres nothing wrong with ur liver its ur blood they found cancer lukemia,. he had a good song were he talked about doctors telling him he only had 3 yrs to live. its called slow pain-best day of my life

  5. About chapo escape
    although a famous mexican wrier wrote that chapo 'escaped' through the front door, that was disproven in the chapo trial by evidence and testimony. he did afterall leave in a laundry basket and the young guard that assisted him remains in prison for his role.

    1. yes hernandez was proven to be a creative writer

    2. Chapo left in a laundry basket set up for him to escape.
      He did not find the basket on his own.

    3. Yes she said Chapo was more powerful then Pablo that made me laugh . Shes clueless

    4. Both escapes were real, that's correct and I NEVER liked Anabel's "Señores del Narco".

  6. Some doctors only care about a paycheck I learned you have to tell them what you want ask to see another doctor if don’t listen to your demands you are paying for a service


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