Former Mexican President Vicente Fox: I Would Have Already Extradited El Chapo

Fox said he would have sent the drug lord to face "U.S. justice."

After Mexican troops recaptured drug lord Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán in early January, Mexican officials finally agreed to start the process to extradite the kingpin to the United States. 

Mexican officials chose not to extradite Guzmán after he was captured in the city of Mazatlan in the spring of 2014, arguing he should serve out his Mexican prison sentences first. In the summer of 2015, Guzmán escaped from the maximum security prison where he was being held through a tunnel leaving from the shower in his cell. It was the drug lord's second prison break. 

Former Mexican President Vicente Fox told HuffPost Live in a conversation last week that he would have acted much more quickly were he still in office.

"If I was president, I would have already extradited him and sent him to the United States to meet U.S. justice," Fox told HuffPost Live host Alyona Minkovski

Interestingly, Guzmán himself has recently made it clear he is looking for a ticket out of Mexico as soon as possible. The drug lord's attorney said last week Guzmán would prefer to be extradited to the U.S. than be subjected much longer to what he claims to be terrible conditions at the maximum security facility in Mexico where he is being held. Despite Guzmán's eagerness to move, his lawyer said the process could take months. 

Former President Fox urged the Mexican government to take Guzmán's plea seriously and swiftly follow through with the extradition. 

"Let's take his suggestion as real and send him immediately to the United States," Fox told HuffPost Live. "From there he's not going to be able to keep running his cartel. He's not going to be able to keep corrupting … jail managers and jail police. So let's take his word."

Watch the full HuffPost Live conversation with Vicente Fox here.

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The Hunt For El Chapo