The lies about the capture of Ovidio Guzmán: from the “Mexican Rambo” to the assault on a hospital in Culiacán

The arrest surprised as it occurred days before the visit to Mexico of US President Joe Biden (Cuartoscuro)
The arrest surprised as it occurred days before the visit to Mexico of US President Joe Biden (Cuartoscuro)

The arrest of Ovid Guzmanone of the sons of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzmanunleashed a series of fires, blockades and attacks in Culiacán, Sinaloa, which not only shook the country, but other countries in the world.

Videos of injuries, clashes, fires, and violent clashes of soldiers with artillery vehicles began to be disseminated on social networks. However, the international agency Reuters performed a reverse search exercise to detect images that did not correspond to the actual event of Ovid’s capture.

The examples shown below are just a few of the large amount of false information that was spread through social networks, blogs and pseudo-news portals.

A 22-second video that circulated after Ovid’s capture, for example, it showed several police officers walking down a hallway surrounded by medical personnel. However, while the clip was edited with fake subtitles to appear to be related to the arrest in Sinaloa, it was actually found to date from 2017 and was recorded in Guatemala.

In another clip, where shots can be seen between a military convoy and different vehicles on public roads, it was falsely linked to the arrest of the leader of one of the sons of “El Chapo”. The video has been circulating on the internet since at least December 25, 2022, and apparently it was recorded in Tamaulipas during a confrontation between the military and alleged gunmen of the Gulf Cartel.

“The Sinaloa Cartel has launched large-scale retaliatory attacks against Mexican security forces following the capture of Ovidio Guzmán. This is happening next door,” the video description read.

Reuters did not independently confirm the source of the video, but it has existed on the network since at least December 25, 2022, when it was posted on Twitter. The agency could not confirm if it was actually a confrontation in Tamaulipas or in Acapulco, Guerrero.

Another recording showed machine gun bursts being fired from an airplane, however, It was verified that these images were prior to the arrest of the drug trafficker also nicknamed “El Ratón”.

The video was widely shared online after Guzmán’s capture on January 5 and shows bursts of bullets being fired from a plane flying over barren terrain.

Even though Reuters was unable to find the original source of the clip, a reverse image search revealed that the video presumably dates from August 21, 2021, when it was uploaded to a Facebook page.

“The Mexican Air Force firing on the cartel. Right now there is a real war going on in Mexico. Very soon this war between the cartel and the Mexican government could spread to our border and to the cities of the southern United States. We must secure our border immediately.”

A recording that circulated on the internet showing two groups dressed in military equipment shooting at each other was not recorded in Culiacán after the arrest of Ovidio Guzmán. Nevertheless, actually it was a fragment taken from a Brazilian television program.

In the video, a group in military gear is seen hunched behind a wall, with one member going first by sliding between two steps. Another group flees down an alley in the middle of a gunfight.

Users shared the video on social networks stating that it showed street clashes after the arrest of Guzmán López, in reality it was recorded on the streets of Rio de Janeiro.

The Mexican Rambo took to the streets after the arrest of ‘Ovidio Guzmán López’, son of ‘El Chapo’”, the description said.


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