Forbes: Drug Kingpin on 'Most Powerful' List
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Forbes: Drug Kingpin on 'Most Powerful' List

New York City : NY : USA | Nov 13, 2009 at 2:59 PM PST
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You don’t have to create software be a network mogul or be a real estate giant or even lead a country to land on the Forbes ‘Most Powerful’ persons list.

Reputed Mexican drug lord Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman proves that point by making the list this week. Guzman is suspected of heading the powerful Sinaloa Cartel operation out of Mexico. Forbes estimated that Guzman’s gang has moved between $8 and $16 billion worth of cocaine over the last eight years.

Cracking the list at number 41, Guzman has been ranked higher than Russian President Dmitry Medevedev (No. 43), Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (No. 46), French President Nicolay Sarkozy (No. 56) and the bombastic President of Venezuela Hugo Chavez (No. 71).

Earlier in March this year, Forbes ranked Guzman as the 401st richest person in the world with an estimated net worth of $1 billion.

U.S. officials have Guzman under indictment and have an outstanding reward offer of $5 million dollars for his capture and conviction.

It hasn’t been since Pablo Escobar inclusion in the Forbes listings in 1969 that an alleged trafficker of drugs has made the list.

In 1993, Mexican authorities captured and imprisoned Guzman on murder and drug charges. However, eight years later with the inside help of corrections officials. Guzman went out with the laundry and has been at large since. More than 70 people were complicate in accepting brides from the fugitive in furtherance of his escape.

The cartel derives it name from the Mexican Pacific Coast where the nucleus of the gang formed. According to authorities it is one of the most powerful drug operations in Mexico.

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Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman
On the lam and still very powerful
Nathaniel Hines is based in Florianópolis, Santa Catarina, Brazil, and is an Anchor on Allvoices.
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