Nation & World

Feds: El Chapo's sons indicted on drug conspiracy charges

A handcuffed Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman is made to face the media Jan. 8 as he is escorted to a helicopter by Mexican soldiers and marines at a federal hangar in Mexico City.
A handcuffed Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman is made to face the media Jan. 8 as he is escorted to a helicopter by Mexican soldiers and marines at a federal hangar in Mexico City.

WASHINGTON – Two sons of notorious drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman have been indicted on drug conspiracy charges, the Justice Department said Thursday.

Joaquin Guzman Lopez, 34, and Ovidio Guzman Lopez, 28, are charged in a single-count indictment that was unsealed last week in Washington.

Prosecutors allege the two brothers conspired to distribute cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana into the U.S. from Mexico and elsewhere in the world from 2008 to 2018. They are both believed to be living in Mexico and remain fugitives.

Their father was convicted earlier this month on drug and conspiracy charges in New York. During a trial that lasted more than three months, prosecutors portrayed El Chapo as the calculating leader of a bloodthirsty smuggling operation that funneled tons of cocaine and other drugs into American cities. The offenses could put him behind bars for the rest of his life.

Prosecutors have said Guzman, who twice escaped from prison in Mexico and was extradited to the U.S. last year for his trial, had amassed a multibillion-dollar fortune smuggling tons of cocaine and other drugs in a vast supply chain that reached well north of the border.

His lawyers raised concerns of potential juror misconduct after a juror told VICE News that several members of the panel looked at media coverage of the case and followed Twitter feeds of reporters, against a judge's orders, making them aware of potentially prejudicial material that jurors weren't supposed to see.

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