5 jurors are reported to have indulged in "forbidden materials."
According to the Associated Press, Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman is demanding a retrial after consulting with his defense team. Eduardo Balarezo has taken up a speaking role amongst the entrusted members of the defense team, by filing an appeal - forcing U.S. District Judge Brian Cogan to reexamine the general conduct of court-appointed jury assembled for the El Chapo trial.
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The court appeal follows news story obtained by VICE News, placing 5 members of the grand jury under suspicion for reading "prejudicial reports" that fell outside the bounds of the legal proceedings. Judge Brian Cogan is believed to have repeatedly reminded the jurors to avoid reading about the case in their spare time, in order to prevent them from impairing their judgment or their objectivity.
“It’s clear we have to get them back into court and get some answers about some massive misconduct," El Chapo's attorney Jeffrey Lichtman told the AP this past week. “We hope it will lead to Joaquin Guzman getting the fair trial that he deserves."
El Chapo's attorneys are holding out for Judge Brian Cogan to "quiz" each juror individually in order "to determine the extent of the misconduct." The issue of misconduct will invariably have little effect on the demonization of the ex-Sinaloa Cartel kingpin. It does, however, point to an incredibly porous margin of error in America's nominal court system. At least one of the accused jurors is believed to have "researched" a pressing point during the trial on their smartphone.