Mexican drug boss Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman has been sentenced to life in prison, after a New York court passed the judgement.
The 62-year-old was arrested back in February for crimes that covers a quarter of a century. It included trafficking hundreds of tonnes of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamines and marijuana to the US, along with money laundering and weapons-related offences.
According to the papers released at the time of his arrest, he was also accused of drugging and raping young teenage girls. His former associate Alex Cifuentes said that Guzman considered these young girls as his ‘vitamins’ because he believed that sexual activity with young girls gave him ‘life’.
BREAKING: Mexican drug kingpin Joaquin `El Chapo’ Guzman sentenced to life in US prison.https://t.co/8IoM6ZVvHA
— The Associated Press (@AP) July 17, 2019
Cifuentes also accused Guzman of bribing former Mexican president, Enrique Pena Nieto, a $100 million (£80m) bribe, and claimed Nieto contacted Guzmán after he took office in 2012 saying he would end a manhunt against him in return for $250m (£200m).
The former leader of the Sinaloa organisation, Guzmán was once one of the richest people in the world, and was listed on Forbes’ rich list of the globe’s most affluent billionaires in 2009.
However, ‘El Chapo’ (aka ‘The Shorty’) is well known for his serial escapes from prison. In 2001, he broke out by hiding in a laundry cart, and spent the next 13 years in and around Sinaloa in hiding.
He managed to escape again in 2015, after he was recaptured in 2014, through a mile long tunnel that took him out of maximum-security Altiplano prison.
A GPS watch had been smuggled through to Guzmán’s cell and his sons bought a property on the periphery of the prison. From this point, diggers crafted a tunnel to his cell and he escaped using an adapted motorcycle.
He was then arrested for a third time in 2016, when he was also extradited to the US and was placed under a much tighter watch. His story has also inspired a Netflix series called ‘El Chapo’, which is now in its third season.