El Chapo’s sons fed enemies to tigers and tortured them using chiles, DOJ says
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Warning: Graphic Descriptions
The US Department of Justice has released an indictment claiming El Chapo’s sons fed their enemies to tigers and tortured them using chile peppers.
Authorities charged sons Ovidio Guzmán López, Jesús Alfredo Guzmán Salazar and Iván Archivaldo Guzmán Sálazar among 28 Sinaloa cartel members charged in a huge investigation into fentanyl-trafficking.
The founder of the cartel, El Chapo himself, is already serving a life sentence in a maximum security prison after being convicted on charges including drug trafficking, money laundering and weapons-related offenses.
The Sinaloa cartel is described in the indictment as 'one of the dominant drug trafficking organizations in the Western Hemisphere', but it's clear their crimes didn't stop with drugs.
Known as the Chapitos, or little Chapos, the sons are said to have 'used their powerful security apparatus to demolish unsupportive businesses, capture contested territory, intimidate civilians, and attack law enforcement', according to the indictment.
The security apparatus, comprised of armed enforcers known as sicarios, used 'military grade weapons, including machine guns, to perpetrate violence, including murder, torture and kidnapping'.
"Sicarios have shot and killed Mexican government officials, tortured rival drug traffickers, including through electrocution, and even fed some of their victims, dead and alive, to tigers belonging to [Iván and Jesús]," the document states.
Rival drug traffickers and law enforcement officers were among those subject to the torture as they were interrogated at a ranch owned by Iván.
"Once information was obtained by these captives, typically through torture, these individuals were killed — either by or at the direction of the Chapitos themselves — and the bodies disposed of throughout the area. While many of these victims were shot, others were fed dead or alive to tigers."
Two of the sons are described as being involved in the murder of two Mexican federal law enforcement officers in 2017, one of who was subject to having a corkscrew 'inserted' and 'ripped out' of his muscles before having 'hot chiles [placed] in his open wounds and nose'.
Another method of torture reported in the indictment is waterboarding, which was used against members of rival drug cartels and those who refused to pay debts.
Though multiple Chapitos have been charged, only Ovidio Guzmán López has been captured.
Speaking about the investigation into the cartel, DEA chief Anne Milgram said: "Death and destruction are central to their whole operation."
She also described the Chapitos and their global network as one that 'fuels violence and death on both sides of the border'.