Everything You Need To Know About The El Chapo Trial

Joaquín 'El Chapo' Guzmán has been found guilty on all counts. Here's everything you need to know about the case and conviction.

El Chapo

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El Chapo

On Feb. 12, 2018, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, the former leader of the Sinaloa cartel, was found guilty on all federal counts, including engaging in a continuing criminal enterprise.

The trial, which lasted three months, attracted an unusual amount of attention and scrutiny, due to the elusive, dangerous nature of the defendant. Precautions were taken to minimize risk to jurors. They were partially sequestered, for one, meaning they were limited to a hotel and the courtroom for the length of the trial, rather than traveling to the court from home. Armed marshals attended their every move. El Chapo had even promised not to kill any of his jurors. But at the end of it all, it took the jury six days—roughly 34 hours—to return their decisive verdict.

Who is this man who inspired such terror in people? What was he accused of? And how did this trial, which was been repeatedly delayed and postponed, progress over the past three months? If the first you heard about El Chapo was from that Sean Penn interview, here's everything you need to know about the trial of El Chapo, suspected former head of the Sinaloa drug cartel.

Who Is El Chapo?

El Chapo

How Did He Get Caught?

El Chapo

Serving Time

El Chapo

First Escape

El Chapo

On The Run—Sort Of

El Chapo


El Chapo

A Free Man Once More

El Chapo Escape Tunnel

Third (!) Arrest

El Chapo

How Did El Chapo Remain Free For So Long?

El Chapo

What Has El Chapo Been Charged With?

El Chapo

Jury Selection

El Chapo

Mrs. Chapo

El Chapo's wife and other weird stuff

The Judge

El Chapo

The Witnesses

El Chapo

Graphic Testimony

El Chapo newspaper

Sex Crimes

U.S. Courthouse

The Outlook

El Chapo

The Outcome

El Chapo's arrest in 2014

The Sentence

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On July 17, Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman was sentenced to life in prison, plus 30 years. The 62-year-old kingpin was allowed to speak before his sentencing and spent those 15 minutes thanking his family, legal team, and supporters, but also spoke on the judicial system which he believes failed him. 

“Since the government will send me to a jail where my name will not ever be heard again, I take this opportunity to say there was no justice,” the New York Daily News reports Guzman said through a translator. “You denied me a fair trial while the whole world was watching ... What happened here is very clear, that the United States is as corrupt as any country.” Guzman felt that the case was rigged from the start, and openly asked why they put him on trial at all.

With this sentence, Guzman is likely going to die in prison on U.S. soil. It's being speculated that he'll serve his sentence in a Supermax facility in Florence, Colorado.

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