Prosecutors seek life in prison for El Chapo

By AFP
Published: July 11, 2019
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PHOTO: REUTERS

PHOTO: REUTERS

NEW YORK: United States (US) prosecutors on Wednesday called for ‘ruthless’ drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman to be jailed for life plus 30 years for trafficking hundreds of tonnes of drugs to America.

El Chapo is to be sentenced on the morning of July 17 after being convicted on February 12 of crimes spanning a quarter of a century, after a trial that laid bare his lavish lifestyle and penchant for extreme violence as the head of one of the world’s most powerful gangs.

“The overwhelming evidence at trial showed that the defendant was a ruthless and bloodthirsty leader of the Sinaloa cartel,” the prosecution said in its request to Brooklyn federal Judge Brian Cogan.

US demands El Chapo forfeit $12.7 billion in drug money

According to the prosecution, the 62-year-old former cartel boss was responsible for the importation or attempted importation of at least 1.2 million kilograms (2.6 million pounds) of cocaine, over 49,000 kilograms of marijuana, more than 200 kilograms of heroin, as well as ‘quantities’ of methamphetamine.

According to a motion filed by US Attorney Richard Donoghue, authorities are “entitled to forfeiture of all property that constitutes or is derived from the defendant’s narcotics-related crimes.”

Based on prices for drugs quoted by various witnesses, Guzman’s 25-year reign atop the Sinaloa cartel netted sales of some $11.8 billion in cocaine, $846 million in marijuana and $11 million in heroin, authorities said.

The money was laundered and used to pay the cartel’s workers and suppliers, as well as used to purchase communications equipment and “planes, submarines and other vehicles.”

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