Mexico City – A woman suspected of being Sinaloa cartel leader Joaquín "El Chapo" (Shorty) Guzmán's money manager was arrested by the Federal Police in northwestern Mexico, officials said.
Guadalupe Fernández Valencia, known as "La Patrona" (The Boss Lady), was arrested on Tuesday in Culiacán, the capital of Sinaloa state.
Mexican investigators determined that Fernández was in charge of coordinating the smuggling of drugs received from Asia, Central America and South America into the United States
The 55-year-old Fernández was the subject of an arrest warrant and is wanted for extradition by the United States on drug charges.
Fernández allegedly distributed cocaine, methamphetamine, marijuana and heroin in the United States, officials said.
Fernández's name was added to the U.S. Treasury Department's Specially Designated Nationals List, or SDN, last November and all her assets in the United States were ordered blocked.
Mexican investigators determined that Fernández was in charge of coordinating the smuggling of drugs received from Asia, Central America and South America into the United States, reporting directly to Jesus Alfredo Guzmán Salazar, one of the Sinaloa cartel leader's sons.
Fernández, who is from the western state of Michoacán, has been identified as the sister of Manuel Fernández Valencia, a reputed associate of Guzmán who is being held by U.S. authorities.
Guadalupe Fernández will be held in prison until a judge determines her legal status, officials said.
The Sinaloa organization, sometimes referred to by Mexican officials as the Pacific cartel, is the oldest drug cartel in Mexico and is led by Guzmán and Ismael "El Mayo" Zambada.
The Sinaloa organization, according to intelligence agencies, is a transnational business empire that operates in the United States, Western Europe, Eastern Europe, the Americas and Asia.
Guzmán was captured on Jan. 8 in Los Mochis, a Pacific coast city in Sinaloa state.
The drug lord had escaped from a maximum-security prison outside Mexico City through a 1.5-kilometer (nearly one-mile) tunnel dug to his cell on July 11, 2015.
Guzmán had earlier busted out of a Mexican prison in 2001 and evaded authorities for more than 13 years before being recaptured on Feb. 22, 2014, in the Pacific resort city of Mazatlán.