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El Chapo's Lawyers Obtain Suspension of Arrest Order for Extradition

A court in Mexico has granted a request filed by El Chapo's lawyers to suspend the order of detention for purposes of extradition entered Wednesday. (Use google translate). The request for a writ of amparo against the detention order was filed Wednesday in the Fifth District court handling Amparo matters, the same day the judge in the Third District Court handling criminal matters granted the request for the detention order.

I think this means he can still be arrested, but he can't be extradited until he has an opportunity to present his defenses against extradition. [More...]

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Mexician Court Approves Detention Order for El Chapo's Extradition

The Mexican Attorney General's office (PGR), issued a statement today (available here in Spanish) saying that a federal judge has approved an order of detention for Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman-Loera for the purposes of extradition to the U.S.

The statement says the Judge reviewed the U.S. request for extradition submitted in late June, 2015, and found it meets the treaty requirements.

Of course, first he must be recaptured alive, and second, he gets to challenge his extradition in court, which could take a year or more. [More...]

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Counter-theories on El Chapo's Escape and Past Non-Accountability

Veteran journalist Ginger Thompson has an article in Pro Publica about the theories floating around that the Mexican Government had a deal with Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman and the escape through the tunnel story doesn't ring true.

She recounts a breakfast she had last week with "a senior Mexican intelligence official", a "veteran American counternarcotics agent" and a guy who was in Mexican cartels for 30 years. His last cartel was the Zetas.

No one in this deeply sourced group was surprised. Nor were they particularly interested in the logistical details of the escape, although they clearly didn’t believe the version they’d heard from the Mexican government.... They were convinced it was all a deal cut at some link in the system’s chain.

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Extraditing El Chapo, Or Not

A few days ago, the Attorney General of Mexico announced that on June 25, 2015, less than two weeks before his escape, Mexico had received a diplomatic note requesting extradition of El Chapo to the Southern District of of California. Here is Mexico's official press release. Via Google translate, it says:

She informed senators and deputies, on 25 June this year was received from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, a diplomatic note, through which the Government of the United States of America made the formal request for the extradition of Joaquin Guzman Loera, in order to be processed by the Federal District Court for the Southern District of California on charges of conspiring to import and possess with the intent to distribute cocaine.

She explained that she turned instructions to the areas of the PGR, to analyze the request and be attached to the legal requirements and of the international treaty on the subject signed between both countries, consideration of the Judicial power of the Federation, in accordance with the appropriate procedure.

[More...]

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Senor de los Toneles

Here are some pictures of the inside of the tunnel that went between Chapo's prison shower and the house over a mile away.

Here's one with showing the light:

[More...]

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El Chapo's Crummy Jail Cell

I'm sure everyone has seen this video by now of Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman pacing in his cell before disappearing while bending down over the hole in his shower floor.

Two questions: Why did they release this photo of him when he clearly has hair in the video?

The photos of his jail cell are very disturbing. It is a filthy horrid place. Who wouldn't want to escape from this hellhole prison? [More....]

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El Chapo: Post-Escape Photos on Airplane

Blog de Narco has received three photograghs purporting to show Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman-Loera after his escape from Altiplano prison in Almaloya de Juarez. While it cannot verify the photos, it did use software that established they were not edited or photo-shopped.

[More....]

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"El Chapo" Guzman: U.S. Makes New Push for Extradition

Mexico's Attorney General last week said he believed the U.S. was hours away from filing a new extradition request for Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman. His lawyers immediately filed a new request a writ of Amparo seeking protection from extradition.

It's all very confusing, since the news and the court filings are in Spanish and Google translate does not do a good job of translating legal terms. I'm reprinting the summary of the court's order below from the court's website, and hoping someone can respond in comments as to whether I'm reporting this correctly. [More...]

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The Not-So-New Sinaloa Indictments

Amidst much fanfare and back-patting at a press conference last week, the U.S. Attorney in San Diego Friday announced recently unsealed drug and money laundering indictments of various leaders and members of the Sinaloa cartel. The Government's press release is here, and the list of charged defendants is here.

"Recently unsealed" does not mean "new." [More...]

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Two New Defendants Added to Chicago Sinaloa Indictment

A sixth Superseding Indictment in the Illinois case charging Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman and Ismael Zambada-Garcia has been unsealed. Two new defendants are named, Edgar Manuel Valencia Ortega and Heriberto Zazueto Godoy.

Valencia Ortega was arrested in Nevada in September, 2013. According to a ruling by Judge Matthew Kennelly in case no. 13-cr-720 (document no. 24), the government had received information he would be traveling to Nevada from Mexico, so they quickly put together an indictment charging a single count of conspiracy to distribute cocaine from April, 2013 to November, 2013. The Government hoped that by arresting him on this indictment, he'd agree to cooperate. After his arrest, they told him and his lawyers that if he diddn't cooperate, he'd be added as a defendant in El Chapo's case. This would also conflict out his lawyers, who represent Tomas Arevalo-Renteria in that case.

He declined to cooperate, and the Government followed through on its threat. His lawyers objected, claiming adding him to the Guzman/Zambada-Garcia indictment was unfair retaliation for his refusal to cooperate. [More...]

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