U.S. federal prosecutors want Mexican drug lord Joaquin (El Chapo) Guzman extradited to Brooklyn following the fugitive’s stunning arrest to end a six-month manhunt.
Guzman, the world’s most wanted drug kingpin since his July 2015 escape from a Mexican prison, was recaptured Friday after a fierce gunfight that left five of his bodyguards dead.
Within hours of the 5 a.m. gunfight in the Mexican seaside city of Los Mochis, prosecutors in Brooklyn, Washington and Florida were planning to extradite the billionaire criminal — who twice escaped maximum-security Mexican prisons.
“I can confirm it is the practice of the United States to seek extradition whenever defendants subject to U.S. charges are apprehended in another country,” said Peter Carr, spokesman for the Department of Justice.
Nellin McIntosh, spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney in Brooklyn, said a joint request from three prosecutors would seek to try Guzman in their jurisdiction.
Guzman was taken into custody after a deadly gunfight between his henchmen and Mexican Marines. A 2014 Brooklyn indictment charged him with 12 murders and the laundering of $14 billion in drug money.
“Mission accomplished. We have him,” tweeted Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto. “I want to inform the Mexican people that Joaquin Guzman Loera has been detained.”
The bloody shootout and arrest followed a pre-dawn raid in the city in El Chapo’s home state of Sinaloa. Guzman was uninjured and taken alive, officials said.
The Mexican drug lord successfully stayed on the lam for months after a daring July 11 escape.