The news that notorious drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman escaped from a maximum security Mexican prison early this morning came as a shock to many, but it seems Guzman's son may have known his father was on the verge on busting out — and even hinted about the jailbreak on Twitter.
Two tweets from an unverified account associated with Ivan Archivaldo Guzman Salazar, one of three known children from El Chapo's first marriage, suggest the escape plot wasn't exactly a closely guarded secret.
The most recent tweet, posted on Tuesday, July 6, is cryptic but highly suggestive. It reads, "All comes to those who know to wait."
"All comes to those who know to wait."
A previous tweet, published on May 8 of this year, is more provocative, especially in hindsight. The younger Guzman said he is gathering armed people, and "I promise you, soon the general will be back."
"I haven't lied and I haven't cried but its fair for men and here is mine. I have armed people and I promise you soon the general will be back."
Authorities say El Chapo escaped through a narrow tunnel cut into his shower stall, which led to a large, elaborate passageway more than a mile long with ventilation, lighting, and a motorcycle built onto rails. It's the second time the Sinaloa cartel kingpin has managed to escape custody after absconding from a different prison in 2001 and avoiding capture until 2014.
Guzman has been called "The King of Tunnels" for his proclivity for building smuggling corridors beneath the US-Mexico border. The extensive underground tunnel from a nearby construction site to the prison likely took months to complete. El Chapo's nickname translates to "Shorty," and he stands about 5 feet 5 inches tall; the tunnel, perhaps not coincidentally, was said to measure just over five and a half feet, allowing him to walk comfortably out of the prison.
Guzman's son was previously sentenced to five years in a Mexican prison for money laundering, but was released in April 2008 after a judge ruled there was no proof the cash he used to open two bank accounts came from drug trafficking.
The younger Guzman was also among 60 suspected Sinaloa cartel members indicted in January by federal prosecutors in Southern California for conspiring to import hundreds of kilos of cocaine, meth, heroin, and marijuana into the US. He and top Sinaloa cartel boss Ismael "El Mayo" Zamabada are the only suspects in the case who remain at large.
The younger Guzman's account has not been verified by Twitter, and VICE News could not independently confirm that he was indeed the person posting the tweets. However, cartel members famously love boasting about their exploits and flaunting their lavish narco lifestyles on social media.
El Mayo's son Ismael Zamaba Imperial — nicknamed "El Mayito Gordo," the chubby little version of his dad — was a notorious playboy in Culiacán, Sinaloa, and posted images of women, expensive cars, ATVs, and weapons on his Twitter account before he got busted last November.
Ivan Archivaldo Guzman usually maintains a slightly lower profile with his purported account, but in February he posted a picture of a hooded man posing with a lion in front of a Mercedes.
Follow Keegan Hamilton on Twitter: @keegan_hamilton