The sketch artist in the courtroom caught the moment El Chapo and his wife exchanged thumbs-up after the verdict was announced.
Mexican drug kingpin Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman is guilty on all 10 counts he was facing in a Brooklyn federal court … and he’s now facing life in prison.
A jury of 7 women and 5 men returned the verdict Tuesday to wrap up a nearly 3-month long criminal trial that included up to 200 hours of testimony about drug trafficking, gold-plated AK-47s, diamond-encrusted pistols … and an alleged $100 million payment to a former Mexican president.
After 6 days of deliberations, the jury returned guilty verdicts against Chapo for engaging in a continuing criminal enterprise, conspiracy to launder narcotics proceeds, international distribution of cocaine, heroin, marijuana and other drugs and use of firearms.
Reporters in the courtroom say Chapo looks stunned by the verdict, and his wife, Emma Coronel, fought back tears … even as she and Chapo gave each other thumbs up.
It’s been a wild ride for the Sinaloa Cartel’s leader over these past few years. He was captured by the Mexican government in 2014, escaped more than a year later through a mile-long underground tunnel … but got caught again in early 2016.
He was extradited to the U.S. in 2017, and between then and last November — when his criminal trial got underway — there have been a series of weird motions and rulings about his life behind bars. Just to name a few, Chapo has had prison TV woes, prayer problems, love letter recommendations and made a heartfelt promise NOT to kill his anonymous jurors.
Law enforcement sources tell us Chapo is looking at a mandatory life sentence … without parole. Sentencing will be announced June 25.
Chapo’s lawyer, Jeffrey Lichtman — who’s in the unenviable position of losing the case — tells us, “We’re very disappointed but we fought like hell and left it all on the battlefield.”