Mexican drug lords are an interesting bunch of people. Whether they are still at large, have been captured or are deceased; they are some fascinating individuals. Here is the list of the 10 most notorious Mexican drug lords, in no particular order.1. Joaquín Guzmán – Joaquín Guzmán was born on April 4th, 1957 in La Tuna, Sinaloa and is known by the name Chapo (or shorty in English). His affiliation is with the Sinaloa Cartel. He escaped from a high-security prison in a laundry cart in 2001 and has since been held responsible for starting bloody territory wars all over Mexico. He allegedly got married to an 18-year-old beauty queen in 2007; in 2008, his son was shot dead and Guzmán supposedly had 50,000 red roses sent to the funeral. He was recently captured.
2. Héctor Beltrán Leyva –
Héctor Beltrán Leyva was born on February 15th, 1964 in Sinaloa and is known by the name El H (or the H in English). His affiliation is with the Beltrán Leyva Organization. He was one of five brothers who transferred tons of drugs to the U.S. The brothers used to work with other Sinaloan criminals but took their leave in 2008 and have been in a violent territory war with Joaquín Guzmán’s clique since. His brother Arturo was shot dead by marines in December 2009. Gunmen then annihilated a marine’s family in what appears to be an act of vengeance. Leyva has been prosecuted in New York and the District of Colombia. He is still at large.
3. Ismael Zambada –
Ismael Zambada was born on January 1st, 1948 in Sinaloa and is known by the name El Rey (or the king in English), the MZ and El Mayo (named after a native Sinaloa tribe). His affiliation is with the Sinaloa Cartel. Zambada supposedly once worked as a furniture removal man before becoming a criminal. He’s an old associate and friend of Joaquín Guzmán and appeared on the front cover of Mexico’s top newsmagazine Proceso this year. He said in the discussion that he had one wife and five lovers and claimed that the army had been close to catching him numerous times. He is still at large.
4. Luis Fernando Sánchez Arellano –
Luis Fernando Sánchez Arellano was born sometime in 1980 in Tijuana and is known by the name El Ingeniero (or the engineer in English). He is affiliated with the Tijuana Cartel. He is the inheritor of the Arellana Félix clique, which has held power over the border city of Tijuana since the 1980s. His uncles were depicted in the movie Traffic as the Obregón brothers. Although declining by the rise of other criminal outfits, the Tijuana cartel still controls a respected piece of trafficking territory along the Mexican border. He is still at large.
5. Heriberto Lazcano –
Heriberto Lazcano was born on December 25th, 1974 in Veracruz and is known by the name El Lazca, Z-3 and the Executioner. He is affiliated with the Los Zetas. Lazcano served in the Mexican armed forces as part of the elite Airborne Special Forces Group. He allegedly received U.S. and Israeli military training, but deserted in the late 1990s to work as an enforcer for the Gulf cartel. He has since broken off to head one of the most brutal gangs in the Mexican drug war, the Zetas — supposedly responsible for the latest massacre of 72 migrants. Lazcano was reportedly killed on October 9, 2012 in a shootout with marines in the northern Mexico border state of Coahuila, according to material from the Mexican navy.
6. Jorge Eduardo Costilla –
Jorge Eduardo Costilla was born on August 1st, 1971 in Matamoros and is known by the name El Coss. He is affiliated with the Gulf Cartel. Costilla heads a cartel that allegedly first grew out of a gang of bootleggers back in the days of American prohibition. Costilla was indicted in the United States for being part of a clan that endangered an FBI and DEA agent with Kalashnikov rifles. He used to work diligently with the Zetas cartel, and then was leading a war to eliminate them. Costilla was arrested on September 12th, 2012 in Tampico.
7. Vicente Carrillo Fuentes –
Vicente Carrillo Fuentes was born on October 16th, 1962 in Guamachilito, Sinaloa and is known by the name the Viceroy. He is affiliated with the Juarez cartel. Fuentes inherited the Juarez cartel from his brother, who was notorious as the Lord of the Skies because of a fleet of Boeing 727 jet planes used to transport cocaine. He supposedly formed a cruel band of killers, with crooked police officers, known as La Linea. His cartel is also said to work with the United States prison gang known as the Barrio Azteca to carry out killings. He is still at large.
8. Antonio Ezequiel Cárdenas –
Antonio Ezequiel Cárdenas was born on March 5th, 1962 in Matamoros and is known by the name Tony Tormenta. He is affiliated with the Gulf Cartel. He was the brother of Osiel Cárdenas( who was known as the friend killer), who led the Gulf cartel until his capture in 2003. He now runs the group along with Jorge Eduardo Costilla. Ezequiel Cárdenas supposedly forged associations with the Italian Mafia to move drugs through the United States and on to Europe. On November 5th, 2010, the Mexican government publicized that Cardenas had died that day in a shootout with security forces in the border city of Matamoros. The death came after hundreds of soldiers moved into Matamoros, across from Brownsville, Texas, and launched a full-blown attack on Cardenas’ cartel. Cardenas was killed during this encounter with the Mexican Marines. The gun fight lasted six hours and saw over 300 grenades go off.
9. Nazario Moreno González –
Nazario Moreno González was born on March 8th, 1970 in Guanajuatillo, Michoacan and is known by the name El Chayo and El Mas Loco (the maddest one in English). He is affiliated with La Familia Michoacana. González specifies in handling crystal meth. He transformed to evangelical Christianity while in the United States and has since written his own Bible, which is required reading for his groups. He raises principles of divine justice when setting out to conquest his opponents and is also a fan of the Godfather trilogy and the film Braveheart. Moreno was supposedly shot dead by federal police in Apatzingan in December of 2010. His men seemingly escaped with his body.
10. Juan José Esparragoza –
Juan José Esparragoza was born on February 3rd, 1949 in Chuicopa, Sinaloa and is known by the name El Azul (or the blue in English). He is affiliated with the Sinaloa Cartel. Esparragoza is associated with Joaquín Guzmán and Ismael Zambada. His nickname is related to the appearance of his skin, which is considered by some as dark enough to be blue. He is thought to have had plastic surgery and sources say he just had a huge wedding-anniversary celebration in central Mexico. He is still at large.
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