Drug lord El Chapo’s son, Ovidio Guzman Lopez has been extradited from Mexico to the US to face drug charges.
Lopez was flown to Chicago on Friday, September 15, where he’ll face charges of smuggling huge quantities of meth and fentanyl across the border and into the United States.
The drug lord – who is the son of Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman – is now in US custody ahead of trial, US Attorney General Merrick Garland announced.
The Mexican government did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Mexican security forces captured Guzmán López, alias ‘the Mouse,’ in January in Culiacan, the capital of Sinaloa state, the cartel´s namesake.
Three years earlier, the government had tried to capture him but aborted the operation after his cartel allies set off a wave of violence in Culiacan.
January´s arrest set off similar violence that killed 30 people in Culiacan, including 10 military personnel.
The army used Black Hawk helicopter gunships against the cartel´s truck-mounted .50-caliber machine guns.
Cartel gunmen hit two military aircraft forcing them to land and sent gunmen to the city´s airport where military and civilian aircraft were hit by gunfire.
The capture came just days before U.S. President Joe Biden visited Mexico for bilateral talks followed by the North American Leaders´ Summit.
On Friday, Garland recognized the law enforcement and military members who had given their lives in the U.S. and Mexico.
‘The Justice Department will continue to hold accountable those responsible for fueling the opioid epidemic that has devastated too many communities across the country.
In April, U.S. prosecutors unsealed sprawling indictments against Guzmán and his brothers, known collectively as the ‘Chapitos.’
They laid out in detail how following their father´s extradition and eventual life sentence in the U.S., the brothers steered the cartel increasingly into synthetic drugs like methamphetamine and the powerful synthetic opioid fentanyl.
El Chapo was convicted of drug offenses in 2019 and sentenced to die in the infamous ADX Supermax prison in Florence, Colorado.
His ex-girlfriend Emma Coronel was released from a halfway house earlier this week.
The indictment unsealed in Manhattan said their goal was to produce huge quantities of fentanyl and sell it at the lowest price.
Fentanyl is so cheap to make that the cartel reaps immense profits even wholesaling the drug at 50 cents per pill, prosecutors said. The brothers denied the allegations in a letter.
Garland said: ‘This action is the most recent step in the Justice Department´s effort to attack every aspect of the cartel´s operations.’