NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Federal prosecutors are targeting $12.6 billion in drug money they say was generated by the Mexican drug lord known as “El Chapo.”
The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Brooklyn asked a judge Friday to order convicted drug kingpin Joaquin Guzman to forfeit the massive fortune.READ MORE: New York Weather: CBS2’s 10/28 Thursday Morning Forecast
They called the amount a “conservative” estimate of the cash Guzman’s Sinaloa Cartel earned distributing cocaine, heroin, and marijuana throughout the United States – contributing to the nation’s ongoing opioid crisis.
Prosecutors pointed to weeks of testimony from drug suppliers who described the lucrative narcotics enterprise during Guzman’s trial.READ MORE: Heat Pull Away To Beat Nets
They said the laundered proceeds covered payroll and the purchase of planes, submarines, and other vehicles.
Guzman was convicted in February of murder conspiracy and drug trafficking. He faces life in prison when he is sentenced later this month.
Some U.S. politicians had previously called for El Chapo’s fortune to be seized; with former presidential candidate Ted Cruz of Texas already eyeing how the government could spend the Mexican criminal’s money.
Sen. Cruz proposed that Congress pass an act that would direct those funds straight to the construction of President Trump’s southern border wall – a project which has struggled to secure funding from lawmakers.MORE NEWS: FDNY Planning Big Anti-COVID Vaccine Mandate Demonstration For Thursday Morning Outside Gracie Mansion
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)