NEW YORK – Notorious drug kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman is willing to accept extradition to the United States — but only if he can do time at a medium security prison, his lawyer says.
In an interview with Mexico’s Formula Radio, Guzman’s attorney says the drug lord will plead guilty once he arrives if his lawyer can negotiate a “reasonable sentence” in addition to the medium security detention.
The attorney, Jose Refugio Rodriguez, said he discussed the idea with the kingpin during a meeting on February 15. He said Guzman asked him to get in touch with a U.S. lawyer to discuss the process.
Guzman, the purported leader of the Sinaloa cartel, has broken out of Mexican maximum-security prisons two times. He slipped out of the Altiplano prison in July through a mile-long tunnel dug under the prison, but was recaptured in January.
Since then, he has been subjected to “physical and mental torture,” according to another attorney.
“He told me, literally, ‘Every two hours, at night, they wake me up to take roll. … They are turning me into a zombie. They do not let me sleep. All I want is just for them to let me sleep,’ ” attorney Juan Pablo Badillo said.
Guzman faces a litany of charges in the United States, and could be tried in various cities, including Chicago and New York.
Last month, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto said his government is working to extradite El Chapo “as soon as possible.”