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  • Leader of the Morena party, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.

    Leader of the Morena party, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador. | Photo: AFP

Published 9 January 2016

Former presidential candidate and ex-head of the Mexico City government said the criminals that should be detained are those at the presidential palace.

The leader of the leftist Mexican MORENA party Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador criticized the government for celebrating the recapture of the world's number one drug criminal Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, when they cannot find the 43 forcibly disappeared Ayotzinapa students.

“They have recaptured El Chapo, but they have not been able to locate the Ayotzinapa students,” who were abducted by police and handed over to a drug cartel in the state of Guerrero in September 2014.

RELATED: Expert: Peña Nieto Was Never Interested in Arresting El Chapo

​Lopez Obrador, two-time presidential candidate for his previous Party of the Democratic Revolution or PRD and former head of the Mexico City government, also criticized the huge publicity with which the government had announced the recapture of El Chapo on Friday.

“They can detain El Chapo, but they are not capable, they are useless, when it comes to finding 43 missing Ayotzinapa students,” said Lopez Obrador.

The politician minimized the capture of Joaquin Guzman, saying what should be detained is the widespread corruption in the country.

"They are making a big deal out of nothing, a lot of publicity, but when are they going to detain and punish the criminal gang that commits more robberies in the country?” he questioned.

OPINION: 'Narcoland' Author on El Chapo's Escape and Government Corruption in Mexico

“Which is the cartel the steals the most?” he asked and replied: “The Los Pinos (Presidential offices and residence) cartel which is lead by Peña Nieto.”

Lopez Obrador said “what is really important is that the Los Pinos cartel stop robbing. Each year corrupt politicians steal over 500 billion pesos (about US$30 billion) and only those who don't have money to buy their innocence or who no longer serves purpose are persecuted an punished.”

RELATED: More Evidence Exposes High-Level Complicity in El Chapo Escape

He gave the example of the corrupt teachers union or SNTE leader Elba Esther Gordillo who was jailed for embezzling close to US$100 million from the union. He said she helped the government to commit electoral fraude and when they found no further use for her they threw her in jail.

“The same with El Chapo now,” he said. “Hopefully Elba Esther and El Chapo will reveal the protection the governments of (former presidents) Vicente Fox, Felipe Calderon and (the current government of) Peña Nieto,” he said.

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