Joaquin Guzmán, better known by his alias, “El Chapo,” arrived in New York recently after being extradited to the U.S. following his drug-related crimes as head of the Sinaloa cartel. The extradition comes after Guzmán’s daring escape from a Mexican maximum security prison in 2015. According to reports, Guzmán escaped through an opening in his shower that was discovered to lead to a mile-long tunnel. The breakout marks the second time Guzmán has escaped from a maximum security prison.
After being recaptured by Mexican law enforcement in a shootout that led to the deaths of five of Guzmán’s associates, a judge in Mexico approved the motion for extradition. The drug kingpin faces charges in California, Texas, Illinois, Florida, and New Hampshire, and will additionally stand before a Brooklyn court under federal charges. Throughout his career in the Sinaloa cartel, Guzmán trafficked billions of dollars of marijuana, methamphetamine, cocaine, and heroin across the U.S. and Mexico. He continued his operation of the cartel in prison by bribing guards and subsequently built his cartel into a multi-billion dollar enterprise. Guzmán even appeared on Forbes’ “World’s Billionaires List” and “World’s Most Powerful List.”
Guzmán awaits trial in Brooklyn, where maximum security measures have been implemented at the Manhattan prison where he is being held. Drug charges are among the most serious offenses in the U.S. in the eyes of the law. If you are facing drug-related allegations, obtaining a resourceful Westchester criminal defense attorney is imperative. Don’t hesitate to contact Law Offices of Richard A. Portale, P.C. at (914) 772-3166 for effective legal representation and to discuss the particulars of your case.