El Chapo found guilty

By Meg Wagner, Brian Ries and Amanda Wills, CNN

Updated 4:13 p.m. ET, February 12, 2019
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2:01 p.m. ET, February 12, 2019

Our live coverage of El Chapo's verdict has ended. Scroll through the posts below to see how it unfolded, or read more here.

1:42 p.m. ET, February 12, 2019

El Chapo's lawyers plan to appeal

From CNN's Eric Levenson

Defense attorney Jeffrey Lichtman said Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman's legal team waged a vigorous defense of Guzman but were up against an "avalanche" of evidence and cooperating witnesses.

They plan to file an appeal on a number of issues.

Lichtman said Guzman was in good spirits, despite the guilty verdict.

"He's a very upbeat guy. He was bringing our spirits up, which was surprising," Lichtman said.

"He's always been a gentleman, always been supportive, always been happy and appreciative of all our efforts," he added.

1:32 p.m. ET, February 12, 2019

Prosecutor: This is a "victory for every family who has lost a loved one to the black hole of addiction"

The conviction of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman symbolizes a victory in the war on drugs according to Richard Donoghue, the US attorney for the Eastern District of New York.

“This conviction is a victory for the American people who have suffered so long and so much while Guzman made billions pouring poison over our southern border. This conviction is a victory for the Mexican people who have lost more than 100,000 lives in drug-related violence,” Donoghue said outside Brooklyn federal court Tuesday.

He continued: “This conviction is a victory for every family who has lost a loved one to the black hole of addiction. There are those who say the war on drugs is not worth fighting. Those people are wrong.”

The government expects Guzman’s conviction will bring a sentence of life without parole.

"No escape and no return,” Donoghue said.

1:05 p.m. ET, February 12, 2019

Jurors avoided eye contact with El Chapo in court

From CNN's Sonia Moghe

Jurors kept their eyes down, not looking at Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzmán Loera, as the verdict was read.

After Judge Brian Cogan read the juror's verdict, he told them that the way they conducted themselves as jurors “made me very proud to be an American.”

Before the judge or jurors entered the room, a member of the defense team approached Guzman's wife, beauty queen Emma Coronel to hand her Kleenex, but she declined.

After the verdict, CNN asked her how she is feeling.

"Bien gracias," she said, which means, "good, thank you."

Guzmán's sentencing is set for June 25. But the guilty verdict on count one alone means he's facing a mandatory life sentence.

12:51 p.m. ET, February 12, 2019

The near-mythical drug lord now faces life in prison

Jurors heard more than 200 hours of testimony from 56 witnesses (though notably not from Guzmán himself) over the course of the roughly two-and-a-half-month trial in Brooklyn

It included testimony from a fellow cartel member who claimed that Guzmán once paid a $100 million bribe to former Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto.  

Guzman, 61, will be sentenced on June 25. He faces the possibility of life in prison.

Here's the full list of counts:

  1. Engaging in a Continuing Criminal Enterprise
  2. International Cocaine, Heroin, Methamphetamine and Marijuana Manufacture and Distribution Conspiracy
  3. Cocaine Importation Conspiracy
  4. Cocaine Distribution Conspiracy
  5. International Distribution of Cocaine
  6. International Distribution of Cocaine
  7. International Distribution of Cocaine
  8. International Distribution of Cocaine
  9. Use of Firearms
  10. Conspiracy to Launder Narcotics Proceeds


12:51 p.m. ET, February 12, 2019

El Chapo waved at his wife after he heard the verdict

From CNN's Sonia Moghe

There was no reaction from Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzmán Loera or his wife, beauty queen Emma Coronel, as the jury read the verdict.

But after the jurors left, Guzmán looked at Coronel and waved. They smiled at each other, and she touched her hand to her chest.

12:44 p.m. ET, February 12, 2019

JUST IN: El Chapo found guilty on all counts

Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzmán, the near-mythical Mexican druglord, was found guilty on all 10 counts, according to Tyler Daniels, spokesperson for the US Attorneys office for the Eastern District of New York.

The charges include engaging in a continuing criminal enterprise, conspiracy to launder narcotics proceeds, international distribution of cocaine, heroin, marijuana and other drugs, and use of firearms.

He now faces life in prison.

12:29 p.m. ET, February 12, 2019

Jurors had 200 hours of testimony, boxes of evidence and 60 pages of instructions

From CNN's Sonia Moghe and Eric Levenson

The jury in Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzmán Loera's trial deliberated for about 34 hours over the course of six days before reaching a verdict.

Legal experts said the drawn-out deliberations may just reflect the complicated nature of the federal case, which included....

  • About 200 hours of testimony since mid-November
  • Boxes upon boxes of physical evidence
  • 60 pages of jury instructions

Jurors could, too, be waffling over the credibility of key government witnesses. This includes some who admitted to heinous crimes and whose sentences could be reduced, per prosecutors, in return for the testimony, said Michael Lambert, an attorney on Guzmán's defense team.

"If the case were as simple as the government argued, the jury would be done by now," he said.
12:48 p.m. ET, February 12, 2019

The jury deliberated approximately 34 hours over 6 days

The jury in the trial of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzmán deliberated approximately 34 hours over past six days.

The 12-person jury, which is made up of eight women and four men, has remained anonymous and partially sequestered.