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el chapo sentencing
July 17, 2019

Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzmán will likely spend the rest of his life behind bars.

The notorious Mexican drug cartel leader was found guilty in February on all ten counts against him, including narcotics trafficking and murder. And on Wednesday in a Brooklyn, New York federal court, he was sentenced to life in prison plus 30 years for what Judge Brian Cogan called Guzmán's "overwhelming evil," CNBC reports.

Guzmán was previously imprison at two maximum-security facilities in Mexico, but broke free twice and was most recently captured in early 2016 and extradited to the U.S. the next year. He's since been held in a Manhattan jail where, ahead of his Wednesday sentencing, Guzmán said he underwent "psychological, emotional, and mental torture 24 hours a day," per The New York Times. Breaking the silence he'd maintained throughout all of the three-month trial, Guzmán also alleged that he'd been denied a fair trial "when the whole world was watching," NBC News reports.

On the other side, the head of New York's Drug Enforcement Administration called Wednesday's sentencing "justice not only for the Mexican government, but for all of Guzmán's victims in Mexico," the Times reports. Guzmán will likely be sent to America's highest security prison in Colorado, and also must pay $12.6 billion in restitution. Still, Guzmán's former Sinaloa cartel has "hardly faltered despite the arrest of some of the group's top leaders," nonprofit investigative group InSight Crime reported in October. Kathryn Krawczyk

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