A grand jury in New York City found Mexican drug cartel kingpin Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman guilty on all counts; setting the stage for a high-stakes sentencing hearing that could send the global criminal to prison for the rest of his life.
Guzman is believed to have led the cartel for decades, and faced a total of 17 charges, including including operating a continuing criminal enterprise conspiring to murder rivals and money laundering.
World's most infamous cartel boss Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman found guilty.
The defense called just one witness, an Federal Bureau of Investigation agent put on the stand in an attempt to undermine the credibility of one of Guzman's cocaine suppliers who had testified against him.
Emma Coronel Aispuro, center, leaves Brooklyn federal court in NY, after attending the trial of her husband Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, on January 17, 2019.
During the trial, more than 50 witnesses testified to the Sinaloa cartel leader's willingness to use violence against enemies of a cartel that prosecutors say smuggled at least 200 tons of cocaine into the USA for more than two decades.
"Senor judge, me and my attorneys have spoken about this", Guzman stated.
After he was convicted, the drug lord waved at his wife, Emma Coronel Aispuro, a former beauty queen, CNN reported.
The verdict came on the sixth day of the jury's deliberations.
Reporters said that El Chapo and his wife, Emma Colonel, didn't show any emotions while the jury read the verdict but afterward, Chapo looked at her and waved. His lawyers say Guzman is not a criminal mastermind but just a fall guy for the leader of the Sinaloa cartel, Ismael "El Mayo" Zambada.
The defense's strategy centered on attacking the credibility of the cooperating witnesses - former secretaries, pilots, cocaine suppliers, Guzman's top trafficker in the United States, a manager, an accountant, a former communications chief, and even a former lover.
Outside the court, U.S. Attorney Richard Donoghue called it a "day of reckoning", promising the government would continue to root out cartel-related drug-running and corruption.