Guatemalan officials are still trying to confirm if Joaquín 'El Chapo' Guzman, one of the world's most powerful drug lords, died during a gunfight in Peten, Guatemala near the Mexican border.
"Residents who witnessed the clashes have told authorities that one of the two dead men resembled the Mexican drug baron," reports Sky News, while The Los Angeles Times reported late last night that forensic teams were headed to Peten to get confirmation of Guzman's death. There are conflicting reports from the Guatemalan government whether bodies were actually found on the scene.
Whatever the case may be, there's a curious Wikileaks wrinkle to this case. Earlier this week, Mexico's Excelsior paper had reported the Wikileaks published an e-mail revealing Guzman's location. Based on the quotes they used, they're referring to this email message from someone at the Stratfor intelligence firm:
Update: Wikileaks says that they began publishing a series of these Stratfor e-mails on February 27, 2012. The e-mail in question is from 2010. Though the series of e-mails was published in 2012, it appears this e-mail was published on February 13, 2013.
As The Los Angeles Times points out, it's common knowledge that Guzman makes his hideout in Peten. What's also telling is that the Mexican military caught Guzman's right hand man earlier this month. On February 11, they caught Francisco Javier Rodriguez (a.k.a Jonathan Salas Aviles, a.k.a. the "ghost" of Chapo), the head of his security team.
Whatever the status of Guzman, authorities really want this guy out of commission To give you an idea of how "wanted" Guzman is, he's the kingpin of the oldest and one of the most powerful drug cartels you'll find in Mexico: the Sinaloa cartel. This past week, Chicago's crime commission named him their Public Enemy No. 1. and said he is more menacing than Al Capone. "What Al Capone was to beer and whiskey during Prohibition, Guzman is to narcotics ...Of the two, Guzman is by far the greater threat. ... And he has more power and financial capability than Capone ever dreamed of," said Art Bilek, the commission's executive vice president, There's currently a $5 million bounty on his head, reports the L.A. Times.