Mexico’s Most Wanted Drug Lord Allegedly Builds His Own Private Hospital

Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes, a.k.a. “El Mencho”, the leader of Mexico’s fastest-growing drug cartel, has allegedly built his own private hospital in order to avoid having to treat his illnesses at other, less secure healthcare facilities.

El Mencho, under whose leadership the Jalisco Nueva Generación Cartel (CJNG) became the most prominent criminal organization in Mexico, reportedly suffers from kidney failure and other serious illnesses that require constant medical care. Unlike most drug kingpins, who usually keep doctors on their payrolls in order to avoid going to hospitals where they could be arrested or killed by police, El Mencho decided to go one step further. Because his serious kidney condition means he can’t have it treated in one of his many mountain hideouts across Jalisco, he allegedly decided to build his own hospital.

According to intelligence reports obtained by Mexican newspaper El Universal, El Mencho’s state-of-the-art private hospital is located in El Alchihuatl, a small community of around 200 people, located 50 kilometres from the town of Villa Purificacion. It’s not the kind of place you would expect to find a modern hospital, but it has the advantage of being a CJNG stronghold. The clinic is a white building, fully equipped, on the orders of Oseguera Cervantes, for the drug lord himself, his men and the locals.

Under El Mencho’s leadership, the Jalisco Nueva Generación Cartel grew into one of the strongest criminal organizations in Mexico, and it has become even stronger in recent months, by taking advantage of the pandemic. CJNG have reportedly been handing out groceries and various other resources to impoverished people in order to boost its influence in Mexican states like Zacatecas, Veracruz and Guanajuato. However, El Mencho himself is a very mysterious figure.

“He’s very secretive. He does not show himself,” Chris Dalby, an organized crime expert, told The Guardian. He’s not a man of the people like El Chapo, who cultivated that cult of personality, who was seen engaging with people, a little bit like Pablo Escobar. He’s part of an evolution of drug kingpins who want to keep themselves in the shadows.”

That doesn’t make him any less dangerous, though. In fact, the DEA has made catching El Mencho a priority, going as far as offering a $10 million reward for information leading to the 54-year-old’s capture.