Amnesty International protests over El Chapo’s ‘harsh’ US prison conditions

The Mexican drug lord is being held in a New York prison cell 23 hours per day with the illuminations on at all times, according to letter from the human rights group

Held without better access to sunlight or his relatives, Mexican medicine nobleman Joaqun El Chapo Guzmn is under more restricted confinement than any other US prisoner, his court-appointed solicitors said on Thursday.

Mexico expelled Guzmn, who is the head of Sinaloa cartel, to New York in January, a few hours before President Donald Trump took office. Guzmn, who escaped from two Mexican prisons and was a key figure in a bloody medicine war, is seen as a flight hazard by the US government.

Guzmn is restricted to his New York City cell for 23 hours per day, with the illuminations on at all times. He has one hour of exercise in a small interior cage with no better access to fresh air or sunlight, Amnesty International said in a letter to assistant US attorney Andrea Goldbarg dated 28 March.

The human rights group is concerned that the conditions imposed on[ Guzman] appear to be unnecessarily harsh and to infringe international standards for humane treatment, the note said.

Amnesty is striving access to the Metropolitan correctional center in lower Manhattan to interview Guzmn.

He has not been allowed to speak to his wife or other family members, and the conditions of confinement outstrip any other mainland US prison, includes the super-secure Colorado prison known as Supermax, public defense attorney Michelle Gelernt supposed.

Mr Guzmn is being held under the worst, more restrictive the standards of any hostage currently detained by the United States government, Gelernt supposed.

Even convicted prisoners held in the notorious federal Supermax in Colorado are allowed to watch television in their cells, exercise outside where they can speak with other prisoners, and be talking about their own families. Mr Guzmn enjoys none of these benefits.

In a filing on Wednesday to US district Judge Brian Cogan of the east territory of New York, Guzmns solicitors said the strict detention throws Guzmn at risk of psychological shatter, and that he was able to already be hearing non-existent sounds.

US attorneys have argued that such tough assess called special administrative measures are needed to prevent Guzmn from communicating with his cartel cohorts still running the multinational trafficking company, and to prevent a repetition of his two Mexican prison escapes.

In his recent escape in 2015, Guzmn went out of prison through a mile-long highly engineered passageway from his cell, a sign of the huge influence he was able to wield even from behind barrooms.

The US confinement conditions, specially restrictions on connected to own family members, intends it is tough for Guzmn to contract private solicitors, since he is not able to speak to their own families to arrange pay or discuss potential lawyers, Gelernt said.

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