Helmet Cam Footage Of ‘El Chapo’s’ Capture

I’ll leave it to members of TTAG’s Armed Intelligentsia who operate operationally to analyze the techniques used by the Mexican Marines in their capture of the Houdini-like drug lord known as”El Chapo.” Note: Sean Penn is not in this video. More’s the pity.


  1. avatar Gman says:

    And why was he captured?

  2. avatar Alex Peters says:

    I have to believe that Sean Penn is regretting getting rid of his gun collection in light of recent events.

    1. avatar GuyFromV says:

      Those guys are fags!

      1. avatar Robb says:

        I missed the reference earlier. I got it now. Have an updoot.

  3. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

    Man, that was a slow crawl through that place. I quit counting how many flashbangs they let loose.
    Going to show this to one of my Mexican co workers to translate for me.

    1. avatar JonoPorter says:

      Mostly what they said was basically: “move it move it move it”

      1. avatar Brentondadams says:

        Yeah, move move move, go right go right.

        I couldn’t catch all of it.

        Lot of US guns and gear though. Our tax dollars at work

        1. avatar Ben says:

          I am surprised the team leader seemed to have to yell over everything to issue commands vs using a com system. It’s like he was hurding cats.

          Sloppy yet effective. Usual Mexican style. You know it is a failed state when the military has to take over LE missions.

          Good job guys anyway, now don’t let him back out for the third time.

        2. avatar OSCAR GARZA says:

          What a misinformed and bigoted comment!
          The USA does NOT give Mexico money or weapons as part of the Merida Initiative (research the term). In fact, the rifles seen on the video are, FX-05 Xiuhcoatl, designed and manufactured by the Mexican Armed Forces.
          You just made a fool of yourself.

        3. avatar Charles Ray says:

          How’s that Mexican space program coming along, Oscar? LOL

        4. avatar Jambo says:

          Oscar, the FX-05 is only used by GAFE. These were M4 carbines, most likely supplied to Mexico by the US, but that doesn’t mean its wrong. The US supplies a lot of nations with a lot of equipment. The US gave equipment to Israel as well, and still does. You don’t see any Israelis complaining that this is bigoted.

          Further, those aren’t flashbangs to anyone wondering. They very clearly say “grenade”. And as for having a comm system, that’s some high-speed stuff, but most troops all over the world still yell out commands, which is why every private in the US Army and the Marines is taught to “sound the F— off.” Combat is loud, and isn’t like CoD.

          I’m still finishing off the video, but it looks intense.

        5. avatar OSCAR GARZA says:

          GAFES do not exist anymore. The team had to be dismantled after some of them became part of the Z cartel.
          The rifles were NOT provided by the USA government. The USA government DOES NOT provide weapons to Mexico, any US manufactured weapon used by the Mexican Army is paid by Mexican taxpayers. Research Merida Initiative.

        6. avatar Vv ind says:

          “The USA government DOES NOT provide weapons to Mexico”

          Ahahaha ha haha aha hahaha, gasp, ah ha hahaha ahaha haha ha…..OK that’s a knee slapper fershizzle

        7. avatar MeRp says:

          Oscar: the Mérida Initiative does not include any weapons transfers, but neither does it preclude them. Indeed, the US does transfer (sell and give) weapons to the Mexican government. When the database is back up and running you can check out exactly what weapons (at least for the years covered) the US has officially provided to the government of Mexico: http://fas.org/asmp/profiles/world.html

    2. avatar anaxis says:

      They were probably just trying to use them up before the use-by date.

      1. avatar Ben says:

        In response to the above comment from Oscar: Due to the Merida Initiative the US does in fact give arms and money to help fight drug cartels.

        Half of which probably goes back to the drug cartels. Just because it hurts doesn’t make it a bigoted comment.

        1. avatar OSCAR GARZA says:

          If you check the Merida initiative, it does not consider weapons, training and other equipment (surveillance) but not weapons.

  4. avatar ThomasR says:

    Hmm. I would assume these are “elite” troops?

    Well, there is a reason Mexico is a third world country and the drug Cartels are able to go head to head against the goverment and hold their own with “elite” troops like this.

    1. avatar Theo Braunohler says:

      Probably because the US Government support cartels and funnels guns and other supplies to them.

      1. avatar Jjimmyjonga says:

        With Ollie North’s help…

      2. avatar Elliott says:

        Gotta keep going with that war on drugs/war on terror/war on constitution or whatever

    2. avatar ThomasR says:

      The reason for stacking on a door and then tossing a flash bang before swarming in is to have the immediate disorientation of the Flash/Bang with the overwhelming fire power as the “operators” come through the door.

      Simply hanging out, shooting un-aimed shots through a window and tossing an odd flash bang or two through an open door or window just gives the bad guys more time to be ready for return fire or even a counter attack.

      1. avatar Steve says:

        Exactly, there’s no momentum, no violence of action, nothing. Hell, even when they enter the room they just chill in the doorway, jumping every time they themselves fire a shot.

        Good way to get killed.

    3. avatar William says:

      It’s my understanding from what I’ve read that the Mexican Marines are in fact the only reliable troops they have. All other national forces be they police or military are in the pockets of one cartel or another.

      1. avatar SouthernPhantom says:

        I’ve heard similar.

  5. avatar James in AZ says:

    I’m so sick of “operators” mounting that heavy ass PEQ15 on the gun no matter what the situation is

    1. avatar Jambo says:

      These are just common Marines. They don’t get a choice.

  6. avatar Noah says:

    Certainly not what the movies teach you to think about “elite forces”. Lots of waiting, lots of grenades, lots of unaimed shots.

  7. avatar James69 says:

    Dang, they got a FILA outlet down there?? how the hell do you tell who not to shoot and who to shoot?? I guess it don’t matter. Nice SBR’s! Where did they get those??

    1. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

      No doubt from us, the US Taxpayer.

  8. avatar zx9rt1 says:

    Sean Penns dumbassery will catch up to him.

    1. avatar Brian says:

      Probably won’t be too long before he’s found dead somewhere

    2. avatar Jonathan - Houston says:

      The Mojave is filled with guys like him.

    3. avatar jwm says:

      Jimmy Hoffa style.

  9. avatar bfitts says:

    I kept yelling “Muzzle Disipline” at the screen…And I thought speed was key to operations such as this. But that is just the opinion of a “Civilian” so who knows.

  10. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

    OK, guys who have operated operationally while wearing 5.11 underroos, ‘splain me something:

    What’s the protocol in a setup like this to prevent a stack from going into a maze of rooms like this, opening up with an AR or M4 loaded with XM193 or green tip and ventilating one or more of their own team through those interior sheetrock walls?

    1. avatar Teddy says:

      Back to the wall point man’s muzzle forward, middle two muzzles outboard, last guy muzzle to the six. Normally it prevents ventilation of good guys.

      1. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

        Does that help when there’s multiple groups of people with guns in adjacent rooms?

        As I watched that footage, when then tossed in the flash-bangs and entered the first set of rooms, they had at least three different groups of guys in adjacent rooms to each other.

        1. avatar foo dog says:

          Great question, wondered same. Stacks were inept, backing up, lots of muzzling going on.
          Looked like a good place for a blue-on-blue to me, but I am only an internet commando, so take with heaping handfuls of salt, amigo’s. Good job catching Shorty.

    2. avatar Cliff H says:

      Not sure of the Spanish translation, but in English it’s “Dumb luck.”

  11. avatar C.Rogers says:

    Did they catch him?
    Did they shoot one another?
    If “yes” answers the former, and “no” answers the latter, they had a good day at the office.

  12. avatar Docduracoat says:

    They caught him because he was driving away in a car
    The operational operators let him escape the house and get in a car
    The hit men in the house covered his retreat.
    He was caught on a highway driving out of town

  13. avatar Vitsaus says:

    What’s the spread on how long before El Chapo walks out of prison again?

    1. avatar Friedrich says:

      He’s a billionaire. I give it a month or 2.

      They locked him in the same prison he escaped from.

  14. avatar C.Rogers says:

    My point still stands.
    If the bad guy was caught and they didn’t shoot each other, they got to suit up, shoot guns, and throw a bunch of flashbangs while yelling in Spanish. Added bonus if the evil henchmen didn’t shoot any of them.
    I wonder if they drank Dos Equis after…..

    1. avatar anaxis says:

      Real Mexican marines drink mezcal. Then they snort the worm after rolling it in primo Columbian bang-bang; swallowing it is for tourists and frat kids.

  15. avatar NickW says:

    Muzzle awareness and positional awareness are paramount when room clearing. It is blatantly obvious that these guys do not drill together frequently. Multiple groups clearing multiple rooms simultaneously is a no no. The best example in this video was 2 “operators” tending to a bad guy on the bathroom floor while the two others are clearing the adjoining room and closet. Had there been someone in that closet, the 2 in the bathroom were likely dead. Oh well…easy to be a critic from my living room.

  16. avatar jwm says:

    Show of hands. Who hasn’t been caught up in a total clusterfuck at least once in their life? Mostly, mostly, we live thru it.

    1. avatar Geoff PR says:

      “Show of hands. Who hasn’t been caught up in a total clusterfuck at least once in their life?”

      Well, most ClusterFucks don’t involve getting the boss of a *major* narcotics cartel re-arrested, with the promise of extradition to the US where a prison cell awaits that can’t be breached as easily as a Mexican one.

      ” Mostly, mostly, we live thru it.”

      Jury’s still out on whether or not Mr. Penn survives this one.

      I admit, it won’t break my heart if he gets whacked, that jagoff likes to hang around nice guys like the late Hugo Chavez…

      1. avatar All_is_fair says:

        I’ll start the rumor here….. Sean Penn set up El Chapo for the Mexican army so that the Rolling Stone article would get larger sales.

        Hopefully that rumor becomes common fact.

  17. avatar OSCAR GARZA says:

    Many Internet Ninja Mall Commandos here…
    OMG!!! All the readers of this article must be Navy Seals, Green Berets, and Delta Force!

    1. avatar foo dog says:

      Calma, Oscar. Its the innertubz, man. Grab a cigar and a cerveza and join the bbq.

      What I know about operational operating south of the border I got from watching Sicario, so I cheerfully accept the slam.

      I’d be more interested in YOUR opinions if you spelled out a little bit of your own creds.

      1. avatar OSCAR GARZA says:

        Sicario? If you knew you would have noticed that the equipment shown for the Delta guys is inaccurate.

  18. avatar Former Water Walker says:

    Bueno OSCAR-if it’s your 1st time here maybe you haven’t noticed all the stories about the corrupt,evil and violent Mexican military & police. Or maybe you have…anyhoo I noticed a fellow dressed in red and wondered “why”-but that’s just me LOL…oh and Sean Penn deserves whatever comes to a dictator and criminal loving freak.

    1. avatar JJVP says:

      I had the same reaction. WTH is that guy doing dressed in a red shirt. LOL. Also halfway through the rsid, there was the “leader” shouting at the to “go ahead”. No one was moving. He repeated the “go ahead” command several times. I was waiting for someone to shout back “you go ahead” ROFLMAO

    2. avatar OSCAR GARZA says:

      Yes, the Mexican gov is all corrupt, but DEA stats show that the USA has 5% of the world’s population and consumes about 50% of all the world’s illegal narcotics, thus, you have corruption in your schools and homes, in fact, if you are a consumer or have been in the past; you have blood in your hands amigo…

  19. avatar Ryan says:

    Those that are concerned about a round penetrating the wall, watch carefully, and you will then notice that all the interior walls are concrete…

  20. avatar Tom says:

    was that a g36 on the floor around the 11 minute mark?

  21. avatar SouthernPhantom says:

    And yet STILL better fire discipline than you’d ever see from an Aloha Snackbar window-licking spray-and-pray…person. I’m mostly just relieved that they didn’t go about dumping magazines at anything that moved.

    Now for the real question: what was the deal with the guy in the red shirt, and why did he seem content to walk in front of an uncleared doorway?

  22. avatar George says:

    That house looks scary as shit to navigate with all the tight corridors. You also have to realize cops and military in Mexico are likely to end up on a cartel hit list when they end up in a hospital wounded. That was probably the cause for a lot of the hesitation.

    I feel bad for the Marine that got injured early in the video if that’s the case.

  23. avatar Michael R. Zupcak says:

    Those Mexican Special Forces are awesome. No doubt trained by American SF. I just hope the extradition goes through before he escapes again.

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