'El Chapo' not a threat to any jurors, lawyer says

Federal agents from DHS/ICE and DEA escort Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, center, from a plane to an SUV at Long Island MacArthur Airport, in Ronkonkoma, N.Y., Jan. 19, 2017. (Federal law enforcement handout)

Notorious drug kingpin Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán would not be a threat to any jurors during his upcoming federal court trial, his defense lawyer said.

Prosecutors have asked Brooklyn Federal Court Justice Brian Cogan to impanel an anonymous jury and provide them with armed guards to and from a secure location during the months-long trial that's expected to begin in September.

However, giving jurors special protections “sends the message to each juror that he or she needs to be protected from Mr. Guzmán. From there, members of the jury could infer that Mr. Guzmán is both dangerous and guilty,” defense attorney A. Eduardo Balarezo wrote in a recently filed motion.

According to the New York Post, the prosecution motion cited the drug kingpin's long history of violence and instances in which he's believed to have tried killing past witnesses.

The Sinaloa Cartel leader faces a rash of charges, including criminal enterprise and international cocaine trafficking.

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