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Mexico approves extradition of drug kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman

May 20, 2016  |  Posted by: JammedUp Staff
Mexico approves extradition of drug kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman

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The Foreign Relations Ministry in Mexico has greenlighted the extradition of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, leader of the infamous Sinaloa Cartel to the United States; it was announced on Friday.

Guzman’s legal team now have 30 days to file an appeal meaning it could still take weeks or months before El Chapo is extradited to the U.S., where he is wanted on drug trafficking and organized crime-related charges in several jurisdictions.

In a statement, officials said the United States government has provided “adequate guarantees” Guzman would not face the death sentence.

Capital punishment in Mexico was abolished and by law, the government does not extradite citizens facing possible execution.

The Foreign Ministry approved an extradition request submitted out of the Texas Federal Court in El Paso for an indictment on charges of murder, conspiracy to import and distribute cocaine and marijuana, weapons violations, money-laundering, and for another transfer request out of San Diego federal court covering the District of Southern California.

Additionally, Guzman faces indictments in Chicago, Miami, San Diego and New York, which many officials believe will be his likely destination.

As JammedUp reported, in recent weeks, a law enforcement official revealed to the New York Post that Guzman would more than likely be transferred to the Eastern District Court in Brooklyn, New York and said it could take place in June.

The drug kingpin’s attorney, Jose Refugio Rodriguez previously said that if extradition were approved by the Mexican government, an immediate injunction preventing his deportation would be filed.

“We are going to do it, but not right away because it’s a process you have to fight with arguments,” he said. “We have 30 days.”

Mexican authorities arrested Guzman back on January 8th in the seaside town of Los Mochis, Sinaloa after spending almost six months on the lam following his July 2015 escape from a maximum-security prison through a mile-long tunnel that led to the floor of his shower in his cell.

In recent days, Guzman’s attorneys had hinted that their client would seek a deal with the U.S. government before his extradition took place.

Earlier this month Mexican authorities suddenly transferred Guzman to a prison on the outskirts of Ciudad Juarez, earlier this month near the U.S. border, a move they said was due to work on improvements at Altiplano maximum security facility.

Rodriguez said he’s been working to have Guzman returned to Altiplano, citing arguments that prison transfer hurt his defense because it’s hundreds of miles away from the court overseeing the case.

He said a judge indicated to them that Guzman could be sent back to Altiplano one prison officials determined the conditions have improved.

Despite criticism, officials have maintained confidence they could house Guzman, who’s already escaped twice, safely at the facility in Juarez, which has implemented the same security protocols, including having 24-hour surveillance through cameras in his cell and on the helmets of his guards.

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