The search for 43 college students who vanished in the southern state of Guerrero, Mexico, has dragged on for more than a month. How the crisis is resolved will have a profound impact on confidence in President Peña Nieto.
Estimates of the number of disappeared people in Mexico during a decade of drug and gang violence rival numbers from Argentina's Dirty War and Colombia's armed conflict. New laws protecting victim's rights require the government to establish a national registry of those who have disappeared.
At least 60,000 people were killed in Mexico between 2006 and 2012 and tens of thousands more disappeared. But the burden of proof is on the family of the missing, who are stuck battling an unprepared and often intransigent bureaucracy as they try to find answers.
The vigilante movement has been hailed in Mexican towns where the Knights Templar cartel wrecked havoc, but it raises questions about extralegal policing.
Guzman's legendary criminal activity inspired songs and even a soap opera. It's an act few may be able to follow in Mexico, as two administrations have eliminated almost all top druglords.