The Mexican government said Thursday that it is turning over notorious drug trafficker Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman to U.S. authorities, hours before President-elect Donald Trump takes the oath of office.
The Mexican Foreign Relations Secretariat (SRE) said in a statement that Guzman’s appeals against extradition had been denied by a federal court.
With Guzman’s last legal recourse exhausted, SRE executed the May 20, 2016, extradition order.
At 5:31 p.m. ET, Guzman was put on a flight to New York from Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, where he had been in prison since being transferred from another facility in May, according to The Associated Press.
The Department of Justice issued its own statement thanking Mexican authorities for their “extensive cooperation and assistance in securing the extradition of Guzman Loera to the United States.”
Guzman was recaptured in January 2016 after escaping a second time and tunneling his way out of a maximum-security prison near Mexico City the previous year.
The Sinaloa Cartel leader has been charged in six separate indictments in the U.S.