After failing to sell at auction, Mexico puts El Chapo’s home up for auction.
According to the Associated Press, Mexico is putting a mansion once owned by former drug lord Joaqun “El Chapo” Guzmán into a national lottery after it failed to sell at auction last year.
Last year, Mexico’s Institute to Return Stolen Goods to the People, or INDEP, sought to sell the mansion at auction. Bidding began at around $130,000, but no one was interested.
According to the Associated Press, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador chose to include the house in Mexico’s national lottery, with the drawing set for Wednesday, a day before Mexico’s Independence Day. This year’s lottery includes several seized properties, and it’s the first time property has been given away through a drawing.
During one of his daily press conferences last week, López Obrador said, “This raffle is very essential, and I call on all the people, those who can help buying a ticket, or two or three.”
The lottery’s proceeds go to Mexico’s Olympic athletes.
See the list below for more Associated Press reporting.
Guzmán’s residence, which he left in 2014 when Mexican military encircled him, has recently undergone some renovations.
The security cameras that had been installed to monitor every angle of the modest home’s façade have been taken down. Guzmán had gone through a hole under a bathtub to reach a network of tunnels, which had been covered with a concrete slab.
Before the lottery, the AP was allowed access to the property in a quiet Culiacán neighborhood. INDEP gave it a fresh coat of white paint on the inside and out, and tiled over the tub and tunnel access point in the bathroom.
López Obrador has been touting the lottery of seized assets, but he has made no mention of the house’s history. More attention has been drawn to a spacious residence in one of Mexico City’s poshest districts and a private box at the iconic Azteca Stadium.
The INDEP website simply describes it as “Casa en Culiacán.” It’s around 2,800 square feet and is in the Libertad district, which means “Freedom” in Spanish. The two-bedroom house is worth $183,000 according to the authorities.
The house had been abandoned for years, and the marines had damaged it during their search, necessitating repairs.
Guzmán fled through the tunnels that time, but not his. This is a condensed version of the information.