Mexican president expects “El Chapo” conviction to deter drug traffickers
MEXICO CITY, FEB 14 — Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on Wednesday expressed the hope for the recent conviction of Mexico’s drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman to dissuade people from a life of crime.
“This should serve as a lesson” to would-be criminals “that money, material things, cheap luxury and fame do not bring true happiness,” Lopez Obrador said.
His remarks came one day after Guzman was convicted in a U.S. federal court of all the 10 charges against him, including manufacture and international distribution of drugs, and use of firearms.
Guzman, 61, is expected to serve a mandatory life sentence yet to be determined at a June hearing. His defense team has said it plans to appeal.
In Mexico, the former Sinaloa cartel boss was deemed untouchable as he repeatedly eluded capture and successfully broke out of jail many times, including from the maximum security prison, usually with the help of corrupt officials.
Guzman was extradited to the United States in January 2017, and was found guilty on Feb. 12 after a three-month trial at a court in New York City.
While Mexico is a primary trafficking route for drugs into the United States, its domestic drug consumption was low but is now on the rise, Lopez Obrador noted.
The president said the Mexican government will launch a nationwide anti-drug campaign to prevent the youth from “falling into temptation.”
“We can tackle the problem of insecurity and violence if we prevent the continued growth of domestic consumption,” he added.