Closed-circuit video has surfaced that reveals the moment Joaquín Guzmán Loera, the drug lord known as “El Chapo,” disappeared from his cell in Mexico’s Altiplano prison. Additional video shows the tunnel he used to escape.

The New York Times reports:

Surveillance video released by Mexican government officials on Tuesday shows the moment of Mr. Guzmán’s brazen escape from the highest-security prison in Mexico last weekend.

Mr. Guzmán, leader of the multibillion-dollar Sinaloa Cartel, had evaded prison for 13 years before he was captured last year by American and Mexican authorities at the seaside resort of Mazatlán, Mexico. He is notorious for ordering the construction of tunnels both to transport drugs and to evade the authorities.

In the video, he is seen crouching behind a partial wall meant to give prisoners privacy while showering — and then he is gone.

The authorities discovered a hole, about 20 inches on each side, in the shower floor. About 30 feet beneath it, they found a tunnel more than a mile long, equipped with lighting, ventilation and a motorcycle on rails used to transport the earth displaced by the grand dig.

Mr. Guzman is perhaps the best-financed fugitive in the world. Forbes magazine once estimated his wealth at nearly a billion dollars. With the resources and loyalists available to him across the country, his recapture will be a tall order.

The government has deployed hundreds of people across the country to monitor roads, airports and transit hubs.

United States Drug Enforcement Administration documents show that the agency warned Mexican officials 16 months ago about an escape attempt, immediately after Mr. Guzmán was caught, according to The Associated Press.

Read more here.

–Posted by Roisin Davis

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