Mexican security forces had a son of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman outside a house on his knees against a wall before they were forced to back off and let him go as his gunmen shot up the western city of Culiacan.
Defence Secretary Luis Cresencio Sandoval on Wednesday showed video of the failed operation to arrest Ovidio Guzman Lopez on Oct. 17 — an incident that embarrassed the administration of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.
The video shot by soldiers shows Guzman exit the house with his hands up. Soldiers order him to call off the attacks around the city.
Guzman then called his brother Archivaldo Ivan Guzman Salazar on his cellphone and told him to stop the chaos.
Archivaldo responded no and shouted threats against the soldiers and their families. The attacks continued and eight minutes later the first wounded soldiers were reported.
Security forces ultimately withdrew to avoid more bloodshed. Thirteen people were killed in gun battles around the city.
Mexico’s Public Safety Secretary Alfonso Durazo said that the aborted operation to arrest Guzman was a “hasty action” that deserves criticism, but added the government’s security strategy is sound.
Critics argued that the government should have anticipated the overwhelming response by the Sinaloa cartel and that by withdrawing they gave cartels a roadmap on how to avoid capture.
Durazo described the action as a “tactical stumble” but said it doesn’t invalidate the security strategy.
Sandoval said that there was an arrest order for Guzman based on a Sept. 13 United States extradition request.