EL Chapo trial jury selection begins in Brooklyn

'El Chapo' Trial: Trial of alleged drug kingpin to begin in US

Jury selection began Monday for the USA trial of Joaquin Guzman "El Chapo" Guzman with potential jurors, including a self-described professional Michael Jackson impersonator, quizzed about how much they knew about Guzman's reputation as a ruthless drug lord in Mexico.

Guzman has been branded the world's biggest drug lord since Colombia's Pablo Escobar, who was dubbed "The King of Cocaine" and was one of the wealthiest men in the world until police shot him dead in 1993.

Security around Guzman has also been tight ahead of the trial. But at what price? He founded the Sinaloa Cartel in 1980.

Recaptured drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman is escorted by soldiers at the hangar belonging to the office of the Attorney General in Mexico City, Mexico on January 8, 2016.

The only visitors he is allowed are his three lawyers and twin seven-year-old daughters - the judge banned his 29-year-old beauty queen wife, Emma Coronel, from visiting. In the United States, opioid addiction has spiralled into an epidemic.

Potential jurors were quizzed Monday, Nov. 5, 2018, about their attitudes on drug trafficking and how much attention they've paid to news reports about Guzman.

Identities of the 12 selected jurors and six alternates will remain anonymous and they will be escorted to and from the courthouse every day by armed USA marshals.

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After two massive prison breaks by El Chapo in Mexico, authorities in the U.S. are taking every precaution to keep their notorious prisoner behind bars.

Guzman faces 11 trafficking, firearms and money laundering charges. Prosecutors say the Sinaloa Cartel, named for Guzman's home state, smuggled more than 200 tons of cocaine into the United States.

Mexican drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman's trial started on Monday with the selection of jurors in Brooklyn federal court.

Unlike most Americans who get called for jury duty, those interviewed Monday seemed genuinely eager to serve. Some are expected to testify under aliases. According to court papers, some are being held in special jail units for their protection, while others are in witness protection programs.

Mexico extradited Guzman to the United States in 2017, and ever since he has been held in solitary confinement at a NY federal prison. He spends 23 hours a day in his cell.

El Chapo notoriously escaped from confinement in Mexico twice, which is in part the reason for the extreme security measures surrounding his confinement and extra measures during any of his transportation.

This time, Mexico made a decision to wash their hands of him and put him on a plane.

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