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Sure, Now Mexico Will Extradite ‘El Chapo’ — If He’s Caught Again

The day before the extradition order became public, Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman's lawyers were already filing an appeal in court to stop it.

by Daniel Hernandez
Jul 31 2015, 9:20pm

Photo via AP

A Mexican judge has released an order to extradite wanted drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman to the United States if he is captured once more by Mexican authorities, prompting the capo's lawyers to preemptively fight the order in the courts.

Yes, Guzman is already fighting an extradition that has yet to happen because the drug lord remains at large after he escaped from a maximum-security prison on July 11 for a second time while in Mexican custody.

Guzman's lawyers filed an appeal on Wednesday against any attempts at his extradition to the US, which wants to try Guzman on multiple charges related to his multi-billion-dollar transnational drug-trafficking operation under the Sinaloa cartel.

Less than a month before his second escape, US officials had filed an extradition request with Mexican counterparts, who were reportedly considering it under current laws just before Guzman used a mile-long tunnel to break free from the Altiplano federal penitentiary west of Mexico City.

Previously, Mexico's former attorney general boasted that it would take "hundreds" of years before Mexico would agree to send Guzman to the United States to face charges, arguing Mexico was capable of handling his detention.

His lawyers' appeal came actually a day before the extradition order became public. Arely Gomez, Mexico's current attorney general, said in a brief statement on Thursday that her office had received and approved the extradition request from a judge in Mexico City.

In the aftermath of the Chapo prison break, a poll released on Friday by the Mexican daily Reforma said two out of three Mexicans now disapprove of President Enrique Peña Nieto's government. Only 34 percent of Mexicans approve of Peña Nieto's administration, his lowest polling numbers so far since taking office in late 2012, Reforma said.

Related: 'Chapo' Prison Break Shows Just How Weak Mexico's Government Really Is

Below, VICE News ventures into the tunnel that Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman used to escape:

Follow Daniel Hernandez on Twitter: @longdrivesouth