Drug kingpin El Chapo set to be locked up in ‘Alcatraz of the Rockies’ | World News
Drug lord Joaquin Guzman is expected to spend the rest of his life in a notorious prison dubbed the “Alcatraz of the Rockies”.
The ADX “Supermax” in Colorado houses some of the country’s most dangerous criminals, and it is understood they will soon be joined by El Chapo following his conviction on charges of drug trafficking, money laundering and the use of firearms.
Current inmates include Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, failed shoe bomber Richard Reid, Unabomber Ted Kaczynski and 9/11 conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui.
No-one has managed to escape from the facility in Florence since it opened in 1994 making it the perfect facility for Guzman, who has previously fled from prison in Mexico twice – once in a laundry cart and once through a tunnel on a motorbike.
A 12ft high razor wire fence, which is protected by laser beams and pressure pads, surrounds the prison. Armed guards with “attack dogs” patrol the grounds, which are also covered by snipers posted in 12 watchtowers.
There are 1,400 remotely controlled doors within ADX Florence which can all be closed and locked simultaneously if there is an escape attempt.
Inmates are kept in solitary confinement for 23 hours a day and get minimal human interaction. They receive meals in their cells and eat them feet away from their toilets.
They are permitted one hour a day recreation time in a concrete pit which is said to resemble an empty swimming pool.
Sometimes they get the chance to spend their exercise hour in the “recreation cage” which is large enough to walk around 31 steps in a circle – this is the closest inmates will get to seeing the outside world during their sentence.
El Chapo was convicted by a federal court in Brooklyn two years after his extradition from Mexico to the US.
The jury was shown evidence that provided an extraordinary glimpse into the brutal and lucrative world of Mexico’s Sinaloa cartel, and how the 61-year-old became its mastermind, moving thousands of kilos of illegal drugs in to the US across its southern border.
The court watched a video of him interrogating a man tied to a post and listened to stories about purpose-built execution chambers and obscene violence.
El Chapo’s former mistress and even his IT man, who tracked and monitored many of his associates, both gave evidence for the prosecution.
Speaking after the conviction, attorney general Richard Donoghue said the result was a “victory for the American people” and added there was “no escape and no return” for El Chapo.
Guzman’s lawyers have said they will appeal the verdict and “continue to fight”.