The son of notorious Mexican drug kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman pleaded not guilty in a US court on Monday.
Ovidio Guzman Lopez made his first appearance in a federal court in Chicago, where he was charged with “conspiring to distribute cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, and marijuana from Mexico and elsewhere for importation into the United States.” according to a statement from the US Department of Justice (DOJ).
How is Guzman Lopez in the US court?
The DOJ said that Guzman Lopez, also nicknamed “El Raton” (the rat), is a “leader of one of the largest and most violent drug trafficking organizations in the world.”
Authorities say the 33-year-old ran the Sinaloa Cartel with his brothers after their father’s arrest in 2019.
Guzman Lopez was arrested in January in the Mexican city of Culiacan, the capital of the state of Sinaloa, after deadly clashes between the military and cartel members. He was extradited to the United States on September 15.
The US will not seek the death penalty for Guzman
The extradition is seen as a major breakthrough in the Biden administration’s fight against the Opioid epidemic, as Guzman Lopez also faces fentanyl-trafficking charges in a New York court.
Guzman Lopez is being held without bail until his trial. His next court date is scheduled for November.
The US has assured Mexico that it will not pursue the death penalty against him, according to Chicago Tribune.
Guzman Lopez’s father, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, is serving a life sentence in a maximum-security prison in the US state of Colorado.
fg/you (AFP, Reuters)