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The Missouri Miner

Missouri S&T's Student Newspaper
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EST. 1915

El-Chapo Sentenced For Life

Riley Dodson

After years of high-profile prison breaks, drug smuggling missions and politician payoffs, Joaquin Guzman, more famously known as “El Chapo,” has been sentenced to life in prison. For three months, a trial was held over the inflow of drugs into the United States and Mexico. Over the past few decades, tons of cocaine, meth, heroin, and other deadly drugs have been smuggled over the border. In court, he was charged with 17 straight guilty verdicts and over 14 billion dollars has been seized in assets by the United States government.

Joaquin Guzman has been smuggling drugs ever since the 1970s under the drug lord “El Guero.” As an ambitious and stern negotiator, he often demanded that his shares would be increased after shipments, and he dealt with any failed smugglers with a swift execution. This behavior got the attention of drug cartel leaders, and eventually he was also in charge of coordinating drug shipments by air, land, and sea.

Shortly after, Guzman managed to gain control of a drug cartel, and over time it grew to become the most powerful drug cartel in the world, which is known as the Sinaloa Cartel. It has territory in Mexico, Asia, most of the Latin American countries, the United States, and other countries abroad. Most of the locations are established for either production of illegal substances or for the distribution of them. Even while Guzman was arrested in 1993, it was still active in fulfilling its missions.

Up until 2014, the United States Department of Treasury considered El Chapo the most powerful drug traffickers in the world. His arrest in 2014 by Mexican authorities received praise from world leaders. Then - U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder praised the detainment, noting that Guzman is responsible for the destruction of millions of lives around the world. Afterwards, he requested that Guzman would be moved to a detainment facility in the United States, which was denied.

In 2015, Guzman escaped the maximum-security prison by a secret passage in the shower room. His escape sparked a manhunt that ended in 2016 during a raid involving 17 Mexican Special Operatives, four police officers, and 40 hired assassins. He has remained in captivity ever since.

Currently, Guzman is held in New York, and after a 3-month trial, he was found guilty on all 17 indictments he had been accused of. Most of the indictments involve the smuggling of cocaine and other harmful drugs, but other witnesses have detailed the long criminal history of Guzman. Besides smuggling drugs, he’s been accused of hiring people to do political payoffs, murder, assaults, assassinations, kidnappings, and torture to keep power.

Although the Sinaloa Cartel continues to operate by his children, the reign of terror imposed upon the world by “El Chapo” may soon be coming to an end. With Guzman’s indictments, he is sentenced to jail for life. His sentencing is scheduled for a date around June, and afterwards he is expected to be held in the United States Penitentiary Administrative Maximum Facility in Colorado, which is a maximum-security prison that holds foreign terrorists, criminal masterminds, and other notorious criminals.


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