|El Chapo's disappearing act in Mexico years ago means several of his charges in Brooklyn Federal Court won't be
vanishing, a judge decided.
Joaquin (El Chapo) Guzman argued four counts accusing him of international cocaine distribution were faulty because the
five-year deadline to bring charges had passed.
Brooklyn federal prosecutors blew off defense arguments, noting the druglord's 2001 escape from Mexican prison — via a
laundry cart — and his next 13 years as a fugitive put the pause button on statutes of limitation. Besides, they said, two of
the charges were within the deadline in any event.
Judge Brian Cogan decided prosecutors "more than sufficiently" showed Guzman was a "fugitive fleeing from prosecution in
both Mexico and the United States from 2001 until 2014, after he escaped from Mexican custody." And that meant the
pause button was pressed on legal deadlines while the 13-year search was on, Cogan ruled Friday.
© Provided by New York Daily News Joaquin (El Chapo) Guzman argued four of his international cocaine distribution
charges were beyond the statute of limitation, but a judge rejected his bid.
Put together, the four counts at issue charged the Sinaloa Cartel leader with moving almost 11 metric tons of cocaine
between 2004 and 2008.
Guzman ended up escaping a second time from Mexican prison. During Guzman's 2014 escape sequel, he made his way
from a tunnel between a shower in his prison cell and a home that looked to be abandoned about a mile away.
Mexican authorities captured him in January 2016.
Guzman was extradited to New York in January and is awaiting an April 2018 trial on the 17-count indictment. He faces up
to life in prison if convicted.