‘El Chapo’s’ mental health worsening in jail, lawyer says

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NEW YORK – The mental state of drug kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman has noticeably changed since being locked up in jail, his lawyer and wife reported.

The notorious Mexican drug lord’s attorney Eduardo Balarezo said Guzman has suffered hallucinations, depression and memory loss due to solitary confinement, according to the Associate Press.

“We have noticed that his mental state has deteriorated, not just his memory but … the way he understands things,” attorney Eduardo Balarezo told reporters following a pretrial hearing in Brooklyn. “He’s not the man he was when I first met him.”

Emma Coronel said she hasn’t spoken to her husband since he was extradited to the U.S. in 2017, the AP reported.

“My worry is his health because I know that he is in bad shape psychologically,” Coronel told reporters. “He feels bad from what lawyers are telling me. It worries me how is he going to start the trial if he’s not in good health.”

Guzman appeared in court Tuesday and waved to his wife, according to the report. He has repeatedly complained about the conditions in the jail, including the lack of air circulation and the range of temperatures either being “too hot” or “too cold.”

Prosecutors argued the conditions are needed due to Guzman’s history of escaping from prison.

The AP reported U.S. authorities assured the judge they’ve taken steps to address Guzman’s concerns.

Guzman faces charges in 10 legal cases in Mexico, as well as federal charges in Arizona, California, Texas, Illinois, New York, Florida and New Hampshire.

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