Authorities Address Local Impact of "El Chapo" Arrest on West Texas
February 28, 2014 at 11:41 PM CST - Updated July 21 at 11:01 AM
By Alicia Neaves
NewsWest 9 posed this question to various law enforcement agencies: "What impact do you think the arrest of "El Chapo" Guzman will have on drug flow and/or violence in West Texas?"
"El Chapo Guzman is the face of 21st century organized crime. He is right where he belongs. He's locked up in a cage. I think the world's a little bit safer place tonight because of that," Michael Braun, former Director of Operations for the DEA, said.
El Chapo Guzman, one of the most powerful drug lords in history, was captured by Mexican marines last weekend. Now, the U.S. is seeking his extradition. So, after the arrest of Joaquin Guzman, will this have a direct effect drug flow and violence locally?
NewsWest 9 spoke with Odessa Police on Friday. They say, if anything, drug flow could get worse. They doubt the sale and transport of drugs will decrease. Maybe it could by the Sinaloa drug cartel. If so, other cartels would probably fill the void.
OPD says the oil boom makes our area attractive. Money and drug sales have a direct correlation. When one increases, so does the other.
What will happen with the Sinaloa drug cartel? OPD used an interesting analogy to describe the takedown of their leader, El Chapo. They say it's like pulling a weed. You pull one out, three more will come up. Police say there's no doubt there will be bloodshed as new leaders try and step in to take the throne. Which makes now the perfect opportunity for authorities to continue pursuit.
"When they become more vulnerable, law enforcement and security forces can experience some tremendous success. We need to exploit this situation for all that it's worth. Now's the time where we absolutely have to pile on," Braun said.
Moving forward, Secretary of Homeland Security, Jeh Johnson, said in a press release, "We congratulate our Mexican partners in this achievement and we will continue to work collaboratively with them to ensure a border region that is safe and secure for the communities and citizens of both our nations."