Guzman, whose nickname means "Shorty", was extradited to the United States for trial in 2017 after he was arrested in Mexico the year before.
Accused Mexican drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman is seen with a handgun on display during a testimony by Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) agent Victor Vazquez (not shown) in this courtroom sketch in Brooklyn federal court in New York City on January 17, 2019.
In a statement after the verdict, lawyers for El Chapo said they were "obviously disappointed" but respectful of the jury's decision.
Through them, jurors heard how the Sinaloa Cartel gained power amid the shifting allegiances of the Mexican drug trade in the 1990s, eventually coming to control nearly the entire Pacific coast of Mexico. Cogan said it made him "very proud to be an American".
NY jurors, whose identities were kept secret, deliberated for six days, sorting through piles of evidence gathered since the 1980s that Guzman's drug cartel smuggled tons of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine and marijuana into the US.
After he was convicted, the drug lord waved at his wife, Emma Coronel Aispuro, a former beauty queen, CNN reported. He did not try to deny his crimes, but instead had his lawyers argue he was merely a fall guy for corrupt government officials guilty of far worse wrongdoing that him.
US District Judge Brian Cogan told the jurors after the verdict that it was up to them to decide to talk to the media, but that he would advise against it.
The evidence included testimony from 14 cooperators.
"This was a case that was literally an avalanche, avalanche of evidence", Lichtman said. Another testified how Guzman sometimes acted as his own sicario, or hitman, punishing a Sinaloan who dared to work for another cartel by kidnapping him, beating and shooting him and having his men bury the victim while he was still alive, gasping for air.
The most shocking allegation of corruption during the trial came from Guzman's former top aide Alex Cifuentes, who accused former Mexican president Enrique Pena Nieto of taking a $US100 million bribe from Guzman.
The trial testimony lasted almost three months and the jurors have been tasked with deciding on 10 separate counts. Another day, a Chapo-size actor who played the kingpin in the TV series "Narcos: Mexico" came to watch, telling reporters that seeing the defendant flash him a smile was "surreal".
Asked what he was wearing, she replied: "He was naked. He left us behind".