Interpol’s Mexico chief says that the dominance of Joaquin Guzman, alias “El Chapo,” over Mexico’s drug exports has declined in recent years, with the Zetas and other smaller groups absorbing much of his market share.
The comments, reported by Excelsior, are in one sense unusual because officials have typically emphasized that Guzman’s Sinaloa Cartel is the most powerful trafficking group in the world. However, the ongoing fragmentation of the nation’s trafficking industry has reduced the hegemonic control of all the big groups, including the Sinaloa Cartel.
However, Carlos Diaz de Leon, the chief of Interpol Mexico, said that, although Guzman’s monopoly over Mexican exports has ended, he remains the most prominent Mexican trafficker on the world scene.
“The big cartels that exist, but also a great constellation of smaller cartels, the big cartels like Sinaloa and the Zetas, they are all present in the world…,” Diaz de Leon said.
Mexican gangs have increased their profile abroad in recent years, setting up shop in South and Central, West Africa, even as far afield as Malaysia and Australia. While the Zetas have been tied to Italian mafia groups, most of the reports of Mexicans operating outside of the Western Hemisphere have been linked to the Sinaloa Cartel.