Published: Tue, February 12, 2019
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Jury reaches verdict in El Chapo trial

Jury reaches verdict in El Chapo trial

In this courtroom drawing, Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, centre, sits at the defence table while listening to the judge addressing the jury during his long-running drug trafficking trial in NY.

The world's most infamous cartel boss Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, who rose from poverty in rural Mexico to run a global drug empire and amass billions of dollars, was found guilty in a us court on Tuesday of drug trafficking.

Guzman leaned back in his chair Tuesday to catch the eye of his wife, who gave him a subtle thumbs up, when the jury was discharged from a federal courthouse in Brooklyn.

He could face life behind bars in a maximum security USA prison.

The cartel boss, who infamously escaped from jail twice, ran a global drug empire and had amassed a fortune of billions of dollars. The lack of a verdict in the first week seemed to please Guzman, who grinned and hugged one of his lawyers before he was led out of the courtroom.

Deliberations were complicated by the trial's vast scope. "No matter who the defendant is, you still have to fight to the death". Colombian trafficker Alex Cifuentes caused a stir by testifying that former Mexican president Enrique Pena Nieto took a $100-million bribe from Guzman.

Upon hearing the verdict, Guzman was "as cool as a cucumber", Lichtman added.

Guzman's wife, Emma Coronel Aispuro, leaves Brooklyn federal court on January 17 after attending the trial. "Amigo!" he said to a cartel distributor in Chicago. He took off running. He then got an escort from crooked police officers into Mexico City before retreating to one of his many mountainside hideaways. He was free at that point after a dramatic escape in which he tunneled out of a Mexican prison. "He wanted to avoid sitting right there".

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