Official figures from Mexico show that the number of homicides in the entire country was higher by a third in January compared to the same month of 2016.
And their crystal ball probably told them it would be a worse increase in the areas where the Sinaloa Cartel were active or had a presence. They were right on the money there also.
In the states of Baja California, Chihuahua and Guzman's native Sinaloa, homicides were up by 50% in January.
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly are due to meet Mexico's Foreign Secretary, Luis Videgaray, in Mexico City on Thursday. Feb. 23.
The talks are expected to focus on migration and the wall the US intends to build along its southern border.
But they are also due to discuss security and ways of curbing the power of Mexico's drug trafficking gangs. They will have a lot to talk about – the successes and failures Mexico has had.
It was to be a separate elite division of the Federal Police that would be highly mobile, able to move on a moments notice into any area of the country where violence flared.
But in a new report recently issued by the Federal Auditor’s Office (ASF), the findings indicate some “shortcomings or deficiencies”. (a big understatement).
The audit applied to 2015, (2016 figures have not been compiled yet) when the Gendarmerie’s budget was 2.8 billion pesos. One of the “deficiencies” found by the auditor was that the Gendarmerie plan was to conduct 10,000 operations against crime but actually completed only 75.
The audit showed that somewhat more successful were efforts to meet the goal of conducting trustworthiness evaluations of 4,546 officers; 79% were evaluated.
But the results of those “trustworthiness” evaluations did not exactly meet the expectations of the government.. Only 16% of those passed the test. Fully 81.8% failed, although most of those were new recruits who were not given employment as a result.
In a nutshell, the National Gendarmerie has not contributed to a reduction in crime in the areas where it has conducted its operations
The Federal Police force itself didn’t fare well either under the examination by the ASF, which said the force didn’t provide enough information to determine its efficiency in preventing and combating crime, or the results obtained through its operations.
From the information the Federal Police did furnish, the ASF did determine that The number of operations dropped by more than 70% in 2015. Those conducted to prosecute crimes totaled just 116 in 2015, down from 404 in 2012.
Crime prevention operations declined from 608 to 156 in the same period.
This situation meant there was “no advance in the improvement of public security,” the ASF said. The ASF did not address the question whether the lack of improvement in public security could have been caused in part by corruption of law enforcement.