Sunday, 17 February, 2019

Jury Reaches Verdict in El Chapo Trial

In this courtroom drawing Joaquin The Latest: US jury convicts Mexican drug lord El Chapo
Patty Aguilar | 12 February, 2019, 21:58

The 61-year-old Guzman broke out of Mexican prisons twice before he was finally recaptured and extradited to the United States in 2017. They were are asked to make 53 decisions about whether prosecutors have proven various elements of the 10-count indictment against Mexican drug kingpin Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman.

New York's Brooklyn Bridge partly closed-off while El Chapo was transported from his prison cell in Manhattan to the courtroom for hearings.

Guzman leaned back in his chair Tuesday to catch the eye of his wife, who gave him a subtle thumbs-up, when the jury was discharged from a federal courthouse in Brooklyn.

The verdict came on the sixth day of the jury's deliberations.

The government, meanwhile, appealed to the jury not to let Guzman escape - an allusion to his two spectacular jail breaks in Mexico, the last one in 2015 through a tunnel from a shower area in his cell.

U.S. Attorney Richard Donoghue called the conviction "a victory for the American people who suffered so much" while the defendant poured poison over the borders.

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The defense called just one witness, an Federal Bureau of Investigation agent put on the stand in an attempt to undermine the credibility of one of Guzman's cocaine suppliers who had testified against him.

One of the world's most notorious drug lords, Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, is on trial in NY and a star witness just revealed a lot about Chapo's Canadian operation.

Yet, jurors reportedly had an "avalanche" of evidence to work with before reaching their verdict.

Jurors in federal court in Brooklyn found Guzman, 61, guilty on all 10 counts.

The criminal trial against the Mexican druglord included 200 hours of testimony that detailed drug trafficking, weapons encrusted in diamonds and gold, as well as an alleged $100M payment to the former president of Mexico.

The defense has accused prosecution cooperators of making him a scapegoat for their own crimes. Many described Guzman's willingness to use violence against enemies of a cartel that prosecutors say smuggled at least 200 tons (181 metric tons) of cocaine into the US over two decades.

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