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Recaptured drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman is escorted by soldiers at the hangar belonging to the office of the Attorney General in Mexico City, Mexico. Photo by Henry Romero/Reuters

Mexico wants El Chapo’s drug money for anti-poverty programs

MEXICO CITY — Mexico’s president says he will use legal channels to try to get the fortune of convicted drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman returned to Mexico.

President Andres Manuel López Obrador said Thursday the money is Mexican, and would be used for anti-poverty programs.

WATCH: The shocking violence that characterized the reign of ‘El Chapo’

López Obrador said Mexico has erred in the past by allowing the U.S. to seize money in corruption and criminal cases against Mexican suspects.

U.S. officials have estimated Guzman’s fortune at $14 billion and a judge ordered Guzman to pay $12.6 billion as part of his U.S. life sentence announced Wednesday. That was money his drug-trafficking organization made distributing drugs in the United States.

But in the past, U.S. officials haven’t said how they intend to get their hands on Guzman’s money.

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