Guadalupe Tapia Quintero, aka "El Lupe Tapia," has been arrested in an operation by the Secretariat of National Defense. The arrest took place in the early hours of Thursday in the Tacuichamona area, 45 kilometers south of Culiacán, Mexico.
Lupe Tapia is a high-ranking member of the transnational criminal organization led by Ismael "El Mayo" Zambada and has been on the DEA's radar since February 2013. He has been described as an "old school" trafficker and is known for smuggling synthetic drugs into the United States, particularly the states of Arizona and California.
The recent military operation in Culiacán has been intensified since Wednesday when the Navy secured a property in the La Conquista neighborhood. Helicopter overflights have been carried out in various areas of the city, including Santa Fe, Humaya, Villas del Rios, Los Angeles, Tres Rios, and Hidalgo.
Lupe Tapia's arrest is a major blow to the Sinaloa Cartel's founding group and will have a significant impact on the trafficking of synthetic drugs. He had been blacklisted by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) since 2014. However, his son, Heibar Josué Tapia Salazar, was arrested in Culiacán last year with 6,000 fentanyl pills.
At present, authorities have not released any official statement regarding the arrest or the outcome of the operation.