United States jury convicts Mexican drug lord El Chapo

El Chapo New York

In this courtroom drawing, Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, second from left, seated with his defense attorneys, listens to testimony that was read back to the jury, Monday, Feb. 11, 2019, in NY.

A grand jury in New York City found Mexican drug cartel kingpin Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman guilty on all counts; setting the stage for a high-stakes sentencing hearing that could send the worldwide criminal to prison for the rest of his life.

Jurors in federal court in Brooklyn found Guzman, 61, guilty on all 10 counts. He faces a mandatory sentence of life in prison.

Federal court marshals whisked Guzman out of the courtroom immediately after the judge read the guilty verdict. When the jurors were discharged, he leaned back in his chair to catch the eye of his wife, who gave him a subtle thumbs-up.

NY jurors, whose identities were kept secret, deliberated for six days, sorting through piles of evidence gathered since the 1980s that Guzman's drug cartel smuggled tons of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine and marijuana into the US.

The notorious former leader of the dreaded Sinaloa Cartel has been the subject of numerous TV shows and films, including Univision's series El Chapo, a recent Netflix documentary with the same title that was ridiculed by Sean Penn, Netflix's Narcos: Mexico and documentary The Day I Met El Chapo with Kate del Castillo.

A defense lawyer says Guzman's conviction is "devastating".

Federal prosecutors say Guzman's Sinaloa cartel amassed billions of dollars importing tons of cocaine, heroin and marijuana into the U.S.

Witnesses detailed assassinations and political payoffs, and how drugs were smuggled using tanker trucks, rail cars and even shipments of canned peppers. The jury, which took days to deliberate, was made up of four men and eight women who had their identities kept anonymous for their own protection.

Jurors have reached a verdict in the case of Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzmán, the Mexican druglord accused of carrying out a sprawling criminal enterprise as chief of the Sinaloa cartel.

The prosecution's case against Guzman, a roughly 5½-foot figure whose nickname translates to "Shorty", included the testimony of several turncoats and other witnesses. Fourteen of those witnesses - mostly admitted drug traffickers and cartel associates - were cooperating with prosecutors in hopes of reducing their own prison sentences.

United States prosecutors told the jury how he had trafficked tons of cocaine, heroin, marijuana and methamphetamine into the U.S. in crimes spanning more than two decades.

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