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‘El Chapo’: Mexican drug lord sentenced to life in prison

Testimonies from more than 50 witnesses showed how Joaguin Guzman became the ruthless mastermind of Mexico's Sinaloa cartel.

Notorious Mexican drug lord Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman has been jailed for life for smuggling illegal drugs into the US over a violent, decades-long career.

El Chapo paraded in handcuffs after re-capture in Mexico
El Chapo paraded in handcuffs after re-capture in Mexico

Jurors found the 62-year-old guilty of drug trafficking, money laundering and the use of firearms in February after an 11-week trial.

Speaking to the court before his sentencing, he said his confinement in the US had been “psychological, emotional, mental torture 24 hours a day”.

He also claimed he had been denied a fair trial and that his case was “stained” by juror misconduct.

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During the trial, prosecutors gave evidence that provided an extraordinary glimpse into the brutal and lucrative world of Mexico’s Sinaloa cartel and how El Chapo became its mastermind, trafficking thousands of kilos of cocaine, heroin, marijuana and methamphetamine.

“The overwhelming evidence at trial showed that the defendant was a ruthless and bloodthirsty leader,” prosecutors said.

“A life sentence is just punishment for this defendant.”

El Chapo’s lawyers spent just 30 minutes presenting their client’s defence, and argued that he was simply a scapegoat acting on someone else’s orders.

But the jury convicted him on all 10 of the counts he faced after hearing testimonies from more than 50 witnesses. SkyNews