EL Chapo trial jury selection begins in Brooklyn

'El Chapo' Trial: Trial of alleged drug kingpin to begin in US

'El Chapo' Trial: Trial of alleged drug kingpin to begin in US

The trial of accused Mexican drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman begins Monday in NY with jury selection.

The 61-year-old drug lord is facing 11 felony charges in relation to drug trafficking, conspiracy, money laundering, and weapons charges, which he is accused to engaging with during his time as the leader of one of the world's most infamous drug trafficking organizations. Given Guzman's current residence at a high-security prison in Manhattan, Federal agents are scrambling to find ways to transport him to the NYC borough without throwing a wrench in the city's traffic flow. Natasha Hussain has the details.

Mr Heroy estimates the trial will cost USA taxpayers "more than US$50 million", a price tag that includes protection programmes for at least some of the hundreds of witnesses expected to testify.

Guzman's co-defendant Ismael "El Mayo" Zambada remains at large.

It is alleged that he spent a quarter of a century smuggling more than 155 tonnes of cocaine into the United States.

Guzman pleads not guilty, but the government has presented so much evidence - more than 300,000 pages and at least 117,000 audio recordings - that the defense complains they haven't had enough time to review it all.

He was extradited to the United States from Mexico on January 19, 2017, after escaping twice from Mexican prisons before being captured again.

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After Felix Gallardo was arrested in 1989, Guzman's Sinaloa cartel began its meteoric rise.

Mexican security forces surround the accused drug lord after his re-capture.

Guzman has been held in solitary confinement in NY since Mexico extradited him in January 2017, one day before Donald Trump took office.

During the trial, jurors will reportedly be accompanied by US Marshals to and from the courthouse, and their names and addresses will be kept secret. He spends 23 hours a day in his cell.

Last year, there was a record 29,000 murders in Mexico. As jury selection is being held behind closed doors, she did not attend Monday.

El Chapo notoriously escaped from confinement in Mexico twice, which is in part the reason for the extreme security measures surrounding his confinement and extra measures during any of his transportation.

He was arrested again by Mexican marines in February 2014 but escaped 14 months later before being re-captured in January 2016.

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