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Legal Challenge Further Delays Extradition of Chapo Guzmán Loera

LADB Article ID: 80009
Category/Department: Mexico
Date: 2016-06-22
By: Carlos Navarro

Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán Loera, another top lieutenant of the same drug-trafficking organization, Jesús Héctor Palma Salazar, also known as “El Güero,” completed a prison sentence in the US and was turned over to Mexican authorities. In May, Mexican federal courts issued two rulings that opened the door for Guzmán Loera to be sent to the US to face trial. However, the legal team for the drug capo filed an appeal against the decision by the foreign ministry (Secretaría de Relaciones Exteriores, SRE) to approve the extradition. Guzmán Loera’s lawyers argued that the extradition is unconstitutional, which could mean that the matter would eventually end up in the hands of the Suprema Corte de Justicia de la Nación (Mexico’s high court, SCJN), said José Luis González Meza, one of the lawyers. The legal challenge also means that Guzmán Loera’s extradition will probably be delayed further, especially if an opinion from the SCJN is required. Guzmán Loera is facing a variety of charges in a handful of US jurisdictions, including trafficking of cocaine, organized crime, money laundering, racketeering, homicide, and illegal possession of firearms.

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