Mexico's Attorney General's Office said Saturday it would begin the process of extraditing notorious Sinaloa cartel kingpin Joaquin "El Chapo" (Shorty) Guzman to the United States, but it noted that "different stages" were involved and that it would take time.
The AG's office said in a statement that there was no impediment to carrying out orders for the drug lord's arrest for purposes of extradition that was issued after his July 11, 2015, escape from a maximum-security prison outside Mexico City.
On June 16 and Aug. 31 of last year, the United States submitted formal requests for the extradition of Guzman, who was recaptured on Friday, for various crimes, including criminal conspiracy, drug smuggling, racketeering, money laundering, homicide and weapons possession.
Guzman's location was tracked to a home in Los Mochis, a Pacific coast city in his native state of Sinaloa, and marines raided the residence early Friday, an operation in which five of the kingpin's men were killed and one marine was wounded.
Guzman escaped through sewers along with his security chief, Jorge Ivan Gastelum Avila, who also was one of the Mexican government's most-wanted fugitives, but both men were apprehended after they tried to flee in a car.
The drug lord had earlier busted out of a Mexican prison in 2001 and evaded authorities for more than 13 years before being recaptured on Feb. 22, 2014, in the Pacific resort city of Mazatlan.
U.S. Justice Department spokesman Peter Carr told EFE Friday, after Guzman was recaptured, that the United States planned to file a new extradition request with Mexico. EFE