FILE – On May 2, 2017, filmed photo, Damaso Lopez, a leader in Mexico Sinaloa drug cartel escalated by the…
FALLS CHURCH, Va. – A top lieutenant of the drug art Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman was sentenced in a Virginia courtroom on Friday to prison.
Damaso Lopez, a leader in Mexico’s Sinaloa drug cartel, accused September of a federal court in Alexandria of drug smuggling costs after being released from Mexico earlier this year.
The lifetime penalty was expected after both parties agreed on a lifetime as part of a trial
. paper, Lopez acknowledged that he was a leader in the Sinaloa cartel and controlled a fraction of hundreds of men. He acknowledged using “sicarios” or the hitmen to perform murder to promote the cartel’s interest and move loads of cocaine and other drugs throughout America.
Lopez’s judgment comes as Guzman faces his own trial in New York.
It is unclear whether Lopez, Guzman’s right man, would be called to testify of Guzman’s attempt. The publicly available court proceedings from the appeal agreement do not contain any requirement for cooperation as they usually would. But several documents in the case remain under seal.
Although Lopez has been sentenced to life, it is a relatively common practice at the federal court in Alexandria for prosecutors to submit a subsequent move seeking a reduction of an opinion for respondents who provide significant cooperation in other cases.
In court records, prosecutors said the cartel generated billions of dollars in illegal profits.
“Simply put, the defendant had a leading role in Sinaloa Cartel, the largest and most violent drug trafficking organization in the world,” prosecutor wrote. “It would be difficult to imagine a more serious drug addiction.”
The Mexican authorities arrested Lopez – known as “El Licenciado”, which is a title for academics – at an apartment in Mexico City last year. The authorities say that the arrest led to the collapse of his faction within the cartel.
Defense Attorneys did not return calls and emails that searched for comments.
Lopez was also ordered to lose 25 million dollars.