The “Sinaloa Cartel”| the myth, the U.S. government’s case and the documents

InSight Crime, the must read for anyone following organized crime in the Americas, recently published my analysis of government documents submitted in the conspiracy and drug trafficking case against Vicente Zambada which is pending in Chicago. Zambada is the son of Ismael “Mayo” Zambada, who is thought to share the reins of power with Joaquin “Chapo” Guzman over what is commonly referred to as the “Sinaloa Cartel.”

InSight Crime reviewed the court documents in the Zambada Niebla case, along with related federal cases in other jurisdictions, and what emerges is a picture that raises significant questions about our popularly-held assumptions of the Sinaloa group: the composition of the organization, its relationship with US-based traffickers and the level of sophistication of the legendary group that is often described as the most powerful drug trafficking organization in the world. 

You can find the piece in its entirety here and in Español aquí.

I first wrote about the Zambada case for Salon in 2011 in the piece, A Narco’s Case Against the U.S.

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