Lawyer: Mexican officials violated privacy of 'El Chapo' by posting prison photo

By Andrew V. Pestano  |  July 12, 2016 at 2:10 PM
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MEXICO CITY, July 12 (UPI) -- An attorney for drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman has criticized Mexican Secretary of Interior Miguel Angel Osorio for posting a picture of his client on social media as to dispel rumors of an escape.

Osorio on Friday posted an image of a computer screenshot of security camera footage showing who appears to be Guzman sitting alone in a table of what seems to be a communal area of a prison. Guards seem to be looking from above.

"For the rumors, an image," Osorio wrote on Twitter with the accompanying image following allegations the kingpin once again escaped Mexican authorities. Guzman is being held in a prison in the Ciudad Juarez border city as he appeals a U.S. extradition.

On Monday, Jose Refugio Rodriguez, one of Guzman's lawyers, said Osorio's decision to post an image of his client on social media "shows the lack of credibility of our authorities."

"With serious authorities, you don't have to exhibit people" to demonstrate no one is lying, Refugio Rodriguez told Imagen Radio, adding that posting the photograph may have violated Guzman's right to privacy as "photographs cannot be exhibited without permission or authorization from him."

Refugio Rodriguez also criticized the conditions in which Guzman finds himself while imprisoned, adding his client's cell is "unhealthy and, in fact, he had to ask for supplies to clean it so it could be washed."

Guzman's Sinaloa Cartel is credited with dominating the illegal drug market in nearly the entire United States. "El Chapo" -- meaning "The Short One" or "shorty" -- so dubbed because of his 5-foot-6-inch frame, was detained in Guatemala in 1993 and then extradited to Mexico to face murder and drug trafficking charges.

He escaped from prison in 2001 by hiding in a laundry cart after bribing prison guards, and was re-captured in February 2014. He was captured a second time in the city of Los Mochis in his home state of Sinaloa on Jan. 8 after escaping from Mexico's Altiplano Federal Prison on July 11, 2015.

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