HomeNewsBriefMexico Court Approves US Extradition Request for El Chapo
BRIEF

Mexico Court Approves US Extradition Request for El Chapo

EL CHAPO / 31 JUL 2015 BY SAM TABORY EN

A Mexico City judge has accepted a US extradition request for Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, a sharp turn from Mexico's previous stance on sending the fugitive drug lord to the United States. 

The extradition order, which was officially accepted on July 31, had been presented to Mexican authorities on June 25, two weeks prior to Guzman's high-profile escape, reported Reuters. The extradition order will be processed if and when Guzman is recaptured. The head of Mexico's Sinaloa Cartel is currently the subject of an intense international manhunt.

The court's acceptance of the extradition request means the Attorney General's Office intends to honor the US' petition, but the request can be appealed by defense attorneys. Mexican law states its citizens must face charges and serve time for any crimes committed in Mexico prior to being extradited, but President Enrique Peña Nieto has executive authority to override this process and extradite immediately once the order is upheld during the appeals process. 

InSight Crime Analysis 

The approval for El Chapo's extradition request stands in stark contrast to Mexico's steadfast refusal to hand over the drug lord, despite US authorities clamoring for his extradition ever since his capture in early 2014. Just this January, Mexico's then-Attorney General, Jesus Murillo Karam, said the US would get El Chapo "in about 300 or 400 years," and that keeping the kingpin on Mexican soil was a matter of national sovereignty. 

SEE ALSO: Coverage of El Chapo

Mexico's about-face regarding El Chapo was likely due in part to his recent escape, but it also reflects the country's uneven approach towards extraditing drug lords wanted in the United States. US-Mexico relations surrounding extradition have been strained for decades, which has resulted in imprisoned kingpins from a number of Mexican drug trafficking organizations being sent to the United States, while many others remain behind bars in Mexico. (See list below)

15-07-13-mexico-extradition-chart 

Meanwhile, the timing of the US' extradition request and now its approval by Mexican authorities may fuel speculation that the drug capo's brazen jailbreak was motivated partly by knowledge that his extradition could be near. But Alejandro Hope, Security Editor for El Daily Post, says that it is hard to say that the escape and extradition request are directly connected. Hope told InSight Crime that Guzman definitely feared extradition and that he might have been aware of the proceedings, but that the tunnel and the planned escape had been in the works for months.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

ELITES AND CRIME / 12 MAY 2021

Time appears to be running out for the governor of the US-Mexico border state of Tamaulipas – after lawmakers stripped…

DISPLACEMENT / 3 MAR 2022

Without the bodies, the exact number of people executed in broad daylight at a funeral in Mexico's western state of…

GULF CARTEL / 30 AUG 2021

It was a Saturday, around 12:30 p.m. local time, when a caravan of three vehicles loaded with well-armed men and…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Escaping Barrio 18

27 JAN 2023

Last week, InSight Crime published an investigation charting the story of Desafío, a 28-year-old Barrio 18 gang member who is desperate to escape gang life. But there’s one problem: he’s…

THE ORGANIZATION

Europe Coverage Makes a Splash

20 JAN 2023

Last week, InSight Crime published an analysis of the role of Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport as an arrival hub for cocaine and methamphetamine from Mexico.  The article was picked up by…

THE ORGANIZATION

World Looks to InSight Crime for Mexico Expertise

13 JAN 2023

Our coverage of the arrest of Chapitos’ co-founder Ovidio Guzmán López in Mexico has received worldwide attention.In the UK, outlets including The Independent and BBC…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Shares Expertise with US State Department

16 DEC 2022

Last week, InSight Crime Co-founder Steven Dudley took part in the International Anti-Corruption Conference organized by the US State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, & Labor and…

THE ORGANIZATION

Immediate Response to US-Mexico Marijuana Investigation

9 DEC 2022

InSight Crime’s investigation into how the legalization of marijuana in many US states has changed Mexico’s criminal dynamics made a splash this week appearing on the front page of…