'El Chapo' Trial: Trial of alleged drug kingpin to begin in US

Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman's reputation as a murderous cocaine smuggler has federal authorities taking no chances as his trial gets underway.

Undated photos from a wanted poster released by the U.S. Marshals Service shows Pedro, left, and his twin brother, Margarito Flores.

U.S. District Court Judge Brian Cogan has said he will try to develop alternative security logistics so the bridge would not be closed twice a day during the trial.

Jury selection is expected to take a few days with opening statements set to start on November 13.

The trial in Brooklyn under tight security brings 17 criminal charges against the 61-year-old former head of the Sinaloa drug cartel, including drug trafficking, money laundering and running a criminal organization.


He's been held in solitary confinement in a high-security federal cell in Manhattan since January 2017, when Mexico agreed to allow his extradition to the United States for trial. He founded the Sinaloa Cartel in 1980.

There were also questioned in Brooklyn's federal court about their views on the legalization of marijuana, their fluency with Spanish and their feelings toward both law enforcement and cooperating witnesses. The 12 jurors and six alternate jurors chosen will be escorted to and from the courthouse by armed USA marshals.

It is alleged that he spent a quarter of a century smuggling more than 155 tonnes of cocaine into the United States.

Joaquin Archivaldo Guzmán Loera has always made up for his size, even if his nickname, "El Chapo", or Shorty, is a constant reminder of his squat, 5-feet-5-inches frame. His co-defendant Ismael "El Mayo" Zambada remains at large, and violent drug trafficking continues unabated in Mexico.

Prosecutors say the US government is seeking a $14 billion forfeiture order as part of the case.


Last year, there was a record 29,000 murders in Mexico. Instead, she has attended nearly all his pretrial hearings, waving and blowing him kisses from the gallery.

Arrested for the first time in Guatemala in 1993, Guzman spent more than seven years in a Mexican prison before his first escape in 2001.

Mexican authorities captured Guzman and an associate in January 2016 fleeing a raid on a house where he had been staying in northwest Mexico. Re-arrested by Mexican marines in February 2014, he escaped again 14 months later.

This time, Mexico chose to wash their hands of him and put him on a plane.


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