Son of drug lord 'El Chapo' kidnapped from restaurant in Mexico

Authorities said six people suspected of being members of Joaquin Guzman's Sinaloa Cartel were abducted

Son of drug lord 'El Chapo' kidnapped from restaurant in Mexico

Mexican drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, right, is escorted by soldiers and marines to a waiting helicopter, at a federal hangar in Mexico City. Image: Marco Ugarte / AP/Press Association Images

A son of Mexican drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman was among a group kidnapped from a restaurant in a Mexican tourist resort, authorities have confirmed.

The state attorney general in Puerto Vallarta said six people suspected of being members of Guzman's Sinaloa Cartel were abducted by a group of armed men on Monday.

Eduardo Almaguer told a news conference that one of Guzman's sons, 29-year-old Jesus Alfredo Guzman Salazar, was among those abducted.

He said four of the six victims had been identified from items found in vehicles at the scene and through forensic work.

Earlier it had been thought that a different son, Ivan Archivaldo, may have been the one who was kidnapped. 

Mr Almaguer said two SUVs carrying the gunmen had arrived at around 1am at La Leche restaurant on Puerto Vallarta's main boulevard, which runs through the hotel zone between the old beach city and the airport.

He said some of those abducted had been on holiday in Puerto Vallarta for a week and the group that was targeted appeared to be celebrating, according to other people in the restaurant.

Authorities found drinks and luxury items inside the restaurant, while their efforts to identify the kidnap victims have been hampered by some of them apparently carrying fake ID documents.

Five vehicles were abandoned at the restaurant, among them one with Jalisco license plates but a false registration.

Mr Almaguer said the rival Jalisco New Generation drug cartel - which dominates the region - was suspected of being behind the kidnapping.

Jalisco New Generation emerged in Puerto Vallarta in 2010 after the death of the local boss of the Sinaloa cartel, Ignacio "Nacho" Coronel.

It has become one of violence-plagued Mexico's most powerful drug gangs in recent months by defying the authorities with a series of brazen attacks and ambushes.

El Chapo is currently in a maximum security federal prison in the northern Mexico city of Ciudad Juarez after staging an audacious escape through a mile-long tunnel in July 2015.

Experts said the kidnapping could be the latest in a string of attacks against Guzman's family - suggesting he may have have lost control of his Sinaloa cartel.

He is believed to have run affairs from prison until his second escape in 2015 - but stricter security measures in his current jail are thought to have hampered his efforts to stay in charge.

In June, local media reported that an armed gang had broken into the home of Guzman's mother in the northern state of Sinaloa and taken vehicles and other goods.

Security expert Raul Benitez said: "There is a war right now for control of the Sinaloa cartel and a central theme in that war is the issue of attacks on his family.

"People have information about the family's movements and they want to destroy the family."