Drug cartels to be targeted in Chicago as part of joint effort by US, Mexico

CHICAGO — A new joint effort of the US and Mexican governments targeting drug cartels will include combating their operations in Chicago, officials announced Wednesday.

Following the capture of Mexican kingpin Juan "El Chapo" Guzman, a new task force has its sights set on the emerging Jalisco cartel and its leader Nemesio "El Mencho" Oseguera Cervantes.

At the Chicago headquarters of the Drug Enforcement Administration, a task force comprised of local, state, national and Mexican agencies made their joint "action plan" for attacking Mexican drug cartels public Wednesday.

"We will continue to work on high value targets but with renewed highlight on specific groups," DEA Special Agent in Charge Brian McKnight said.

WATCH: DEA and Mexican officials announce new joint plans to combat Mexican drug cartels Wednesday 

Now that Guzman is in US custody, the Sinaloa cartel’s influence in our area has waned somewhat, drug agents say. But others have stepped In to fill the void. The Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG) is led by Cervantes, who is now identified as Chicago’s most wanted. Law enforcement would like to see him extradited here, similar to Guzman.

CPD Supt. Eddie Johnson says the Mexican drug cartels own the heroin and fentanyl trade, and they distribute through street gangs on the West and South Sides. Johnson also blames them for the record number of overdoses and innocent Chicagoans caught in their crossfire.

According to Johnson, 300 kg of heroin have been seized in the city since January, but admittedly that may just be a small or very amount of what gets through. They are aiming to put an end to that.

Johnson said they hoped to, "stem the flow of illegal drugs and therefore stem the violence on our streets."