Tuesday 6 December 2016

Sean Penn and Rolling Stone under fire for El Chapo interview

Actor describes murderer as a "simple man in a simple place" during rambling article dismissed as "grotesque" by Republican presidential candidate

Published 11/01/2016 | 06:31

Actor Sean Penn shakes hands with Mexican drug lord Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman in Mexico during their meeting in October for a ‘Rolling Stone’ interview. Photo: Rolling Stone
Actor Sean Penn shakes hands with Mexican drug lord Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman in Mexico during their meeting in October for a ‘Rolling Stone’ interview. Photo: Rolling Stone

Sean Penn and Rolling Stone are facing a withering barrage of criticism for publishing a rambling account of a jungle-clearing interview with Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, the Mexican drug lord.

  • Go To

The magazine was slammed for its decision to allow the convicted drugs trafficker a platform to issue his views when he was the most wanted criminal in the world.

A Mexican marine lifts a bathtub that leads to a tunnel and exits in the city's drainage system at one of the houses of Joaquin 'Chapo' Guzman in Culiacan. Guzman, who rose from humble origins to become one of the most powerful drug barons in history, was captured on Saturday in a raid in the beachside resort and fishing center of Mazatlan, 125 miles southeast of Culiacan, just days after escaping from the clutches of Mexican troops through the tunnel and sewers. Reuters
A Mexican marine lifts a bathtub that leads to a tunnel and exits in the city's drainage system at one of the houses of Joaquin 'Chapo' Guzman in Culiacan. Guzman, who rose from humble origins to become one of the most powerful drug barons in history, was captured on Saturday in a raid in the beachside resort and fishing center of Mazatlan, 125 miles southeast of Culiacan, just days after escaping from the clutches of Mexican troops through the tunnel and sewers. Reuters

Sean Penn has also come under fire for his 11,000 words of prose which he makes reference to flatulence as a “subtle brume”.

Meanwhile, Mexico began the process of extraditing drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman to the US, two days after the fugitive was recaptured following a dramatic, months-long hunt featuring film stars, sewer escapes and bloody shoot-outs.US

Officials warned the process could take a long time as Guzman's lawyers file legal appeals and manoeuvre to keep their client in Mexico, where he has already escaped from maximum security prisons twice.

On Sunday, agents formally notified Guzman that he was wanted in the United States.

The attorney general's office said Mexican agents assigned to the international police agency Interpol served two arrest warrants to the drug lord, who is being held at the Altiplano prison following his capture by Mexican marines on Friday.

Guzman's defence now has three days to present arguments against extradition and 20 days to present supporting evidence, beyond the many other appeals they have already started filing.

Guzman's powerful Sinaloa cartel smuggles huge shipments of cocaine and marijuana as well as manufacturing and transporting methamphetamines and heroin, mostly to the US.

He is wanted in various US states and his July escape deeply embarrassed the government of President Enrique Pena Nieto and strained ties between the countries.

Guzman's lawyer, Juan Pablo Badillo, has said the defence has already filed six motions to challenge extradition requests.

He said that his client should not be extradited to the US because "our country must respect national sovereignty, the sovereignty of its institutions to impart justice".

On Saturday, a Mexican law enforcement official said the quickest Guzman could be extradited would be six months, but even that is not likely because of the many appeals filed by his lawyers.

He said that the appeals are usually turned down, but each one means a judge has to schedule a hearing.

"That can take weeks or months, and that delays the extradition," he said. "We've had cases that take six years."

Mexico's willingness to extradite Guzman is a sharp turnaround from the last time he was captured in 2014.

Then-attorney general Jesus Murillo Karam said the extradition would happen only after he finished his sentence in Mexico in "300 or 400 years".

Guzman was caught on Friday after a shoot-out between gunmen and Mexican marines at a house in Los Mochis, a seaside city in his home state of Sinaloa. Five suspects were killed and six others arrested. One marine was injured.

Mexican authorities say actor Sean Penn's contacts with Guzman helped them track the fugitive down - even if he slipped away from an initial raid on the hideout where the Hollywood actor apparently met him.

Online Editors

Read More

Promoted articles

Editors Choice

Also in World News