US hopes for ‘imminent’ extradition of ‘El Chapo’

US hopes for ‘imminent’ extradition of ‘El Chapo’
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The United States wants Mexico to help put notorious cartel leader Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán in an American jail cell as soon as possible, Attorney General Loretta Lynch indicated on Monday.

Hours after a Mexican judge ordered the Sinaloa Cartel leader to be extradited to the U.S., Lynch said she hoped for quick action to bring him north.

“We’ve provided them the information they need to make those determinations and we’re looking forward to an imminent resolution of that,” Lynch told reporters during a press conference at the Justice Department in Washington.


“What we are waiting for is a final order from the Mexican court that would finally order the extradition. We are awaiting that. We are hopeful that we will attain that,” she added.

“We are hoping for it, but again, it is up to the Mexican court system,” Lynch said.

“We will then be in discussion with them about the mechanics of a transfer. That has not begun to occur, as of yet.”

The comments are among the most vocal calls for the Mexican justice system to swiftly go through the motions to bring Guzmán to the U.S., months after he was re-captured by Mexican authorities following his second escape from prison. The cartel head's escape last July through a tunnel underneath his prison cell deeply embarrassed Mexican officials, and raised questions about whether he could be held there.

Despite the movement in Mexico, it still could be months — if not years — before the drug lord is brought to the U.S., due to quirks in the Mexican legal system. His lawyers have reportedly said extradition would violate Guzmán’s human rights, and a government source told Reuters that no action is likely for weeks to come.

Over the weekend, Guzmán was transferred to a federal prison in Ciudad Juárez, near the U.S. border.


On Mondau, Lynch declined to tip her hand as to which U.S. jurisdiction Guzmán would be brought to face charges including murder and drug trafficking.

“We look at all of the relevant charges against any individual who is brought here via extradition and determine which particular jurisdiction can, often by working with another one, generate a case that covers most of the relevant conduct if not all of the relevant conduct, and will provide the best remedy for his actions,” she said.

“Every case is considered.”