one of The lawyers of Joaquin Guzman, alias “El Chapo,” said Tuesday at the opening of the trial of the suspect drug-dealer, in New York, the mexican president and his predecessor had received bribes from the cartel of Sinaloa, one of the most powerful in the country. Several hundreds of millions of dollars have been transferred, in the name of the organization, Enrique Pena Nieto, the incumbent president, and, before him, Felipe Calderon (2006-2012). Both have denied the allegations. The spokesman for the mexican presidency has described as “false and defamatory”, while Felipe Calderón, were deemed “false and irresponsible”.

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“The truth is that he only controlled nothing”

Jeffrey Lichtman , lawyer of”El Chapo”

The person responsible for these payments would be Ismael “El Mayo” Zambada, a co-defendant in the trial of”El Chapo,” but now on the run, said Jeffrey Lichtman in his oral statement. “The truth is that he only controlled nothing,” said the council in respect of Joaquin Guzman, who faces life in prison at the end of this trial, which is expected to last more than four months. For Jeffrey Lichtman, “El Chapo” is a “scapegoat” of the mexican government. “Why the mexican government has-does he need a scapegoat? Because they make too much money with the bribes of the barons of the cartels”.

The drug trafficker El Chapo held in New York – Look on Figaro Live

authorities suspect “El Mayo” directing the cartel of Sinaloa, in the absence of”El Chapo”, arrested in January 2016. The latter was extradited to the United States in January 2017 after having managed to escape twice from high-security prisons in Mexico. The beginning of the trial was delayed on Tuesday by the withdrawal of two jurors. The first, a woman, has produced a medical certificate, and the second, a man, indicated that he had not the means to follow a trial of such duration, being without a job. Two new jurors were replaced, before the debate can really begin.

154 tons of cocaine shipped to the United States

When the selection last week, several potential jurors had asked to be excused, for fear of reprisal from the suspect drug-dealer or its relatives. The american justice presents “El Chapo”, 61, as one of the drug lords as the most dangerous she had ever had between her hands. He is accused of having directed, from 1989 to 2014 the powerful cartel of Sinaloa, the name of the mountains in the north-west of Mexico where it is native. U.s. prosecutors say that under his leadership, the cartel sent to the United States more than 154 tons of cocaine, worth an estimated $ 14 billion.

The trial “is emblematic of american justice”, she wants to make “an example of the war that lead the United States against the drug traffickers,” said Rene Sotorrio, a lawyer from Miami who has defended many drug traffickers. “El Chapo is an icon, the embodiment in the collective imagination of the suspect drug-dealer dangerous,” he stressed. This explains, according to him, that the american justice has not sought to negotiate any agreement to plead guilty, which would have avoided a long and very expensive trial.

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“El Chapo” pleads not guilty, but the american justice ensures that you have gathered a mountain of overwhelming evidence against him, submerging the defense counsel, and complain of not being able to all examine: some 300,000 pages of documents, 117,000 in audio recordings, and the quantity of photos and videos. Before the start of the oral argument of the defence, which will continue this Wednesday, the prosecution had assured him that Joaquin Guzman was the leader of the organization”, according to assistant prosecutor Adam Fels. In this small courtroom, which could accommodate only a quarter of the hundred or so journalists present, the representative of the public prosecutor promised the jury evidence of “sales of drugs, murders, corruption”, in particular text messages sent by “El Chapo” himself. During the trial, jurors will hear as well, via recordings, text messages, or letters, the accused describe “the empire of the drug with its own words,” announced Adam Fels.

while waiting to find out if the jurors deem the Mexican guilty of the 11 charges against him, after a trial expected to last more than four months, the fear of another escape, or another coup d'”El Chapo” flat on the court. Even his wife, the ex-beauty queen Emma Coronel, cannot visit him. She was swarmed by a swarm of journalists upon his arrival at the court. And at the exit, she has agreed to do some “selfies” with fans.

To protect the jurors selected, their names will remain secret and they will be escorted by guards each day at court in Brooklyn, where many armed men and sniffer dogs have been deployed. The list of witnesses, including former partners, employees or rivals,”El Chapo” – called to be witnesses is also kept secret. Some benefit from the protection of the us government, and now live under new identities. Others are detained in special prisons to prevent any retaliation. On Tuesday, the lawyer of”El Chapo”, Jeffrey Lichtman, has accused the american justice have agreed to protect criminals, or even to absolve, in exchange for their cooperation. “Why is the government going so far, by giving them visas to settle in this country, among us?”, he asked. “Because ‘El Chapo’ is the most beautiful trophy which the prosecution has dreamed it.”