The strangest story of 2016 just took yet another dramatic turn.
The 15-minute video shows Mexican special forces infiltrating a two-story house in the coastal town of Los Mochis and exchanging gunfire with Guzmán’s henchmen—five of whom were killed and four others captured. The kingpin himself managed to escape the house through a passageway that led into the town’s sewer system. According to CNN, Guzmán had a 90-minute head start on the soldiers, but was soon apprehended on a highway outside the town by Mexican federal police.
The footage was recorded by a GoPro camera mounted on the helmet of one of the Mexican special operators. Only one soldier was wounded (he can be seen at 1:09 in the video, lying on the floor and receiving medical attention, as bullets and grenades fly above him).
Guzmán, who is said to be responsible for 25% of the drugs that enter the United States, had been on the run since July, when he notoriously escaped from his maximum security prison cell through a hole in the ground.
He was, ironically, done in by his dreams of having his very own Hollywood biopic. Since escaping prison, he had attempted to contact Hollywood producers via various intermediaries, who Mexican authorities then tracked back to his whereabouts in the state of Sinaloa. The crucial tip that alerted authorities to the house came from a neighbor reporting suspicious activity.
The resulting GoPro footage probably isn’t quite the movie El Chapo dreamed of starring in, however.
American actor Sean Penn secretly met with Guzmán in Mexico in October, and detailed his bizarre, controversial account in Rolling Stone. It’s unclear if Penn’s interview actually helped Mexican authorities capture the drug lord.
Mexican authorities have begun the process of extraditing El Chapo to the US, where he faces umpteen drug charges (paywall). Federal prosecutors in three major cities are already fighting over the right to put him on trial.