El Chapo appeals life sentence, claiming his trial was unfair

Convicted Mexican drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman has appealed the life sentence he was handed a year ago, arguing that his prosecution was rife with “rampant excess and overreach” by the feds and court system.

Defense lawyer Marc Fernich filed the appeal late Friday in the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York, a year after Guzman, 63, the head of Mexico’s powerful Sinaloa drug cartel, was sentenced to life plus 30 years. He’s been kept in isolation at a supermax prison in Colorado since then.

“Chapo Guzman’s prosecution was marred by rampant excess and overreach, both governmental and judicial,” Fernich wrote in the appeal, filed under seal to avoid making confidential material from the investigation public.

The part made public claims in part that one of Guzman’s lawyers had a conflict of interest; that jurors violated orders not to read news and social media posts about El Chapo and the trial; that his Fourth, Fifth and Sixth Amendment rights were violated by the use of solitary confinement and other excessive security procedures, and that the court made a series of flawed rulings about evidence.

The notice to appeal was filed a day after he was sentenced. Among his crimes, Guzman was found guilty of trafficking hundreds of tons of narcotics in an over two-decade span.

The new documents demand that the court appoint a different judge to consider the appeal and investigate accusations that the government handled the case improperly.

Original Post https://nypost.com/2020/09/05/el-chapo-appeals-life-sentence-with-claims-of-unfair-trial/