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Mexico Court Wants El Chapo To Cross The Border, Legally

REUTERS/Henry Romero/Files

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JP Carroll National Security & Foreign Affairs Reporter
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A Mexican federal judge has ruled Friday against Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, making it more likely the drug lord is extradited to the U.S. in 2017.

The Sinaloa Cartel boss has been fighting against extradition to the U.S. since May when the Mexican Ministry of Foreign Affairs approved of the process. El Chapo’s legal team is now eyeing the Mexican Supreme Court as their next best hope for keeping their client on Mexican soil.

Mexican Commissioner for National Security Renato Sales Heredia stated on Mexican television Oct. 14 that the government intends to have El Chapo out of their country by January or February 2017.

If extradited to the U.S., El Chapo faces a whole host of federal drug trafficking charges. U.S. authorities have already agreed that if he makes it to the U.S., El Chapo will not face the death penalty for any of his numerous crimes.

The decision which makes it all the more likely El Chapo will be extradited to the U.S. comes on the heels of a different judge that was dealing with El Chapo’s case having been gunned down Monday. Mexican federal judge Vicente Antonio Bermúdez was shot at point-blank range while going out for his morning jog near his home. Bermúdez died from the gunshot wound in a hospital a short while later.

El Chapo is currently incarcerated in a prison near Ciudad Juarez, which he has called home since May. The Sinaloa Cartel kingpin made world headlines in July 2015 when he broke out of Altiplano Prison near Mexico City and when he was subsequently recaptured in January.

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