The lawyer for Joaquín Guzmán - better known as El Chapo - has called out the "degrading conditions" the former drug lord is being held in in prison.
José Refugio Rodríguez Núñez has complained about how Guzmán, who is serving 30 years for charges related to drug trafficking and money laundering at Administrative Maximum U.S. Penitentiary (ADX) in Colorado, US, has been treated in the prison.
Speaking on a local radio earlier this week, he said his client had sent him a message urging him to contact Mexican president Andrés Manuel López Obrador to request his return to Mexico because of the conditions.
He said: “From April to date they have taken him out of a playpen that measures seven feet wide by eight feet long, once a week, maximum three times a week for two hours, the sun does not hit him, the food is lousy quality, no health; he was sick with some teeth and instead of curing them, they took them out so he wouldn't be bothering.”
He added that since last March, Guzmán has only been permitted to make six or seven calls to his family members or legal team.
Núñez also claimed Guzmán gets unequal treatment to the other inmates - he went on: "The guards are forbidden to speak to him in Spanish... he is segregated in his cell and he grieves for these serious human rights violations.”
In May last year, Guzmán wrote a seven-page letter complaining about his life in prison
Guzmán wrote: "Due to the treatment at ADMAX, now I suffer from headaches, memory loss, muscle cramps, stress and depression."
He added: "The treatment I receive is cruel and unfair, and it is causing me to suffer from psychological and health problems. I pray that this court intervenes."
In the letter, Guzmán described how he spends most of the day in a cell measuring seven by 12 feet with only a small window through which he is served his meals.
He wrote: "I am ruled out of having any verbal contact or communication with other prisoners.
"I have no human contact, other than when the guards put on and take off my shackles."
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