El Chapo has been sentenced to life imprisonment plus 30 years after a dramatic sentencing hearing in Brooklyn where he pleaded for mercy and complained about the conditions inside his New York City cell.
The 62-year-old broke his silence to make a statement, his first throughout his months-long legal saga.
Speaking through a translator, he complained that he was ‘tortured 24 hours-a-day’ in his solitary confinement cell at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan, where he has been since January 2017.
He also complained that he was denied a fair trial, that the judge failed to investigate claims of prosecutorial misconduct and said the United States is ‘no better than any corrupt country’.
Guzman, wearing a gray suit, purple tie and purple shirt, began by blowing a kiss to his wife, Emma Coronel Aispuro, and thanked her and his legal team for their support.
He had grown his moustache back for the hearing which was surrounded by armed guards and caused such a media scrum that journalists slept outside the courthouse to ensure they got a spot.
El Chapo’s mother was denied a humanitarian visa to attend the hearing. The only other relatives in attendance were his oldest daughter, Rosa Isela, who holds US citizenship, and one of his nieces, Dania.