His nickname, which means "Shorty," matches his 5-foot-6-inch frame.
Guzman escaped from a high-security Mexican prison in 2001, reportedly hiding in a laundry basket. Throughout the years, he avoided being caught because of his enormous power to bribe corrupt local, state and federal Mexican officials.
"When you arrest Chapo Guzman you're arresting the leader of all the cartels," Jordan said. "This guy had a hand in everything, and he owned every politician."
Guzman has been included in Forbes' World's Most Powerful People list since 2009. Forbes estimated his fortune at more than $1 billion.
Guzman is wanted on numerous drug trafficking and organized crime charges in Mexico and the United States, which had offered a $5 million reward for information leading to his arrest and had sought his extradition in the past. His drug enterprise stretches throughout North America and reaches as far away as Europe and Australia.
The Sinaloa cartel has been blamed for its role in the bloody drug war that has plagued Mexico in recent years and lefts tens of thousands of people dead.
Guzman was born in Badiraguato, Sinaloa, at a time when the drug trade was evolving, and began his career in the drug trade working for powerful drug lord Miguel Angel Felix Gallardo, according to a biography by Time. He founded his own cartel in 1980, and quickly established outposts in a number of states, eventually inheriting some of his mentor's territory, according to Time.
Guzman's arrest caught Jordan and other observers by surprise.
"There is no way that I would have bet that they would have ever arrested him under this administration unless he double-crossed somebody or didn't make the full payments on bribes," Jordan said, citing Guzman's alleged ties to the ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party. "Something went wrong."