How a Mexican drug-lord dines out

When Joaquín Guzmán Loera, leader of Mexico's notorious Sinaloa Cartel, wants to dine out, he engages some rather extreme security measures:

In 2005 on a Saturday evening, Guzmán reportedly strolled into a restaurant in Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, with several of his bodyguards. After he took his seat, his henchmen locked the doors of the restaurant, collected the cell phones of approximately 30 diners and instructed them to not be alarmed.[26] The gangsters then ate their meal and left – paying for everyone else in the restaurant.[27]

Culiacán appearance

Later that year, Guzmán was reportedly seen in Culiacán, Sinaloa, repeating the same exploit at a restaurant.[28] According to a witness, in November 2005 Guzmán entered the restaurant in Culiacán with 15 of his bodyguards, all of them carrying AK-47s.[29] The restaurant was known as "Las Palmas", a lime-green eatery with an ersatz tile roof on a busy street.[30] A man in the restaurant told those present the following:

"Gentlemen, please. Give me a moment of your time. A man is going to come in, the boss. We will ask you to remain in your seats; the doors will be closed and nobody is allowed to leave. You will also not be allowed to use your cellulars. Do not worry; if you do everything that is asked of you, nothing will happen. Continue eating and don't ask for your check. The boss will pay. Thank you."[29]

Joaquín Guzmán Loera (via Reddit)


  1. Hey guys, we’ve got a VIP coming in to eat. Don’t worry, though, it’s not the daughter of a high powered state official or anything, so no need for alarm…

    1. You’d think word would get out anyway.  “Someone has taken over _____ restaurant and secured the doors.  Might be worth sending some of our boys down there…”

  2. Sounds like he knows how to heighten a romanticized image of himself among the plebes.

      1.  Not to be “that guy”, but this happened in 2005, while Foursquare was funded in 2009.

        inb4: Whooosh and/or thatisthejoke.jpg

  3. “There’s a small, but distinct, possibility that you will be seriously wounded or even die a violent death tonight. You may be completely innocent and have no connection to The Boss, but we regret that you may be caught in some crossfire. On the plus side your meals have all been paid for.”

    1.  Brought to you in part by America’s insatiable appetite for drugs, easy access to militarized firearms, and the poor policy making that goes along with it….

    2. What can I say? I’ll put up with a lot for a free meal. Especially if the bar tab is included.

    3.  That’s the thing. The Mexican military don’t give a damn if some innocent by-standers become casualties. In the end they will claim they had also a criminal record in order to save face.

      I’m tired of all this. So fucking tired…

      1. I’m pretty sure the nacro gangs don’t care either and are happy to burn down a packed dance hall and leave severed heads too.

    1. Methinks the Boss wouldn’t notice. Mealsothinks the Boss never sees the bill. All part of doing business…so its deductible.

      1. I was more making the point that if I could have any food I wished fully paid, I might dream wilder dreams than the surf and turf. 

        1. well to be honest I don’t know if you are going to find anything more decadent in a Mexican restaurant.

  4. I bet spending an entire meal staring at your plate and nothing else limits the appetite.

    1. Gee… how darn lucky people are Stateside and further below… Not that mafia isn’t hands on all over the world, but in the Americas (both continents)… well.. you have promoted the trait to a whole other galaxy… no wonder why all futuristic films like Mad Max actually portray the decay at its finest in an American scenery… Cheers and good luck folks… no offense (and I’m sure that you shall all reply “non taken”), but such comments like this one are pretty much spontaneous… Signed – Sealed – Delivered: a bewildered citizen from Europe…God bless…

        1.  ?  I’d always thought it was the Cotswolds, in England.  Hmph.  Learn something new every day.

        2. Yes, but Amerikkkkkkkkkkka is evil because we have arid areas.  Which are proof of evil.

          1.  Exactly. It’s definitely not evil in here in Englandland, cos it pisses down all the fucking time.

  5. You know, A good free meal where I am free of being bothered by my cellphone every 5 minutes isn’t a bad deal… assuming I survive.

  6. So everyone gets to be implicated in the drug trade…. Paying everyone’s bill somehow makes it worse – for me anyway.

  7. “I’ll have a thousand grilled cheese sandwiches.  And 300 tuna fish, and 200 BLT.”

  8. Actually, my thought was “How very Stalinist!” The only difference being that Stalin, known for his white-knuckle,  8-hour meals that commenced at 11pm, and featured forced inebriation and performance (folk dancing) by the demand of Fearless Leader, was far too paranoid to hold his dinners away from the Kremlin or this Dacha.

    Apparently this cat has quite the security deal, he’s an unrealistic optimist, or he’s managed to achieve a universal terror without decades of purges, deportations and intentional famines. And that is terrifying.

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