The trial will be one of the most expensive proceedings in US history.
Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman is at the center of a high-profile trial. The legal proceedings begin with its jury selection on Monday, November 5, in Brooklyn. The required security to ensure each parties safety is unprecedented and it expected to cause the Brooklyn Bridge to be closed twice a day until the end of the trial. The length of this process is estimated to 4 months.
An emphasis is being placed on security as some witness plan to testify under aliases for their safety. Jurors will also be escorted by US marshals to court daily while remaining anonymous throughout the trial. These measures are being implemented in spite of Guzman's promise to refrain from killing the jurors. The courthouse is also being guarded with heavily armed officers and bomb-sniffing dogs.
The 61-year-old drug lord is facing 11 felony charges in relation to drug trafficking, conspiracy, money laundering, and weapons charges, which he is accused to engaging with during his time as the leader of one of the world’s most infamous drug trafficking organizations. He founded the Sinaloa Cartel in 1980.
Guzman managed to escape from prison in Mexico twice before being extradited to the US on January 19, 2017. He was first apprehended by Mexican authorities in 2016. The charges he currently faces can earn him a lifelong prison sentence.
Opening statements are scheduled to begin on Nov. 13.