Mexican Officials Say Sean Penn Led Them to ‘El Chapo’
MEXICO CITY (CBS NEWS) – The recapture of drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman took a surprise, Hollywood twist when a Mexican official said security forces located the whereabouts of the world’s most-wanted trafficker thanks to a secret interview with U.S. actor Sean Penn.
Penn’s interview with Guzman, who has twice escaped from Mexican maximum security prisons, appeared late Saturday on the website of Rolling Stone magazine. It was purportedly held at an undisclosed hideout in Mexico in late 2015, several months before Guzman’s recapture Friday in Los Mochis, Sinaloa, after six months on the run.
In the interview, Guzman defends his work at the head of the world’s biggest drug trafficking organization. When asked if he is to blame for high addiction rates, he responds: “No, that is false, because the day I don’t exist, it’s not going to decrease in any way at all. Drug trafficking? That’s false.”
In the article, Penn describes the elaborate security measures he took ahead of the clandestine meeting. But apparently they were not enough.
A Mexican federal law enforcement official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not permitted to comment on the issue, told the Associated Press it was the Penn interview that led authorities to Guzman in a rural part of Durango state in October.