CBS NEWS -- While Washington continues to debate funding over President Trump's long-promised border wall along the southern border, Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, says he has a solution for financing: Have convicted drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman foot the bill.
Cruz tweeted the proposal after Guzman was found guilty on all 10 counts in his criminal conspiracy and drug trafficking trial, saying that the $14 billion dollars in drug profits U.S. prosecutors are seeking from the infamous drug lord "should go towards funding our wall to secure the border."
Cruz urged his colleagues on Capitol Hill to pass his "El Chapo Act" which he previously re-introduced early last month. The "Ensuring Lawful Collection of Hidden Assets to Provide Order (EL CHAPO) Act" would reserve any amounts forfeited to the U.S. Government as a result of the criminal prosecution of "El Chapo" and any other drug lords "for border security assets and the completion of the wall along the U.S.-Mexico border," Cruz said.
Prosecutors cited an "avalanche" of evidence gathered since the late 1980s that Guzman and his murderous Sinaloa drug cartel made billions in profits by smuggling tons of cocaine, heroin, meth and marijuana into the U.S.
Evidence showed drugs poured into the U.S. through secret tunnels or hidden in tanker trucks, concealed in the undercarriage of passenger cars and packed in rail cars passing through legitimate points of entry.
"Congress has a clear mandate from the American people: secure the border and build the wall," Cruz said in a statement.
"Ensuring the safety and security of Texans is one of my top priorities. Indeed, I have long called for building a wall as a necessary step in defending our border. Fourteen billion dollars will go a long way to secure our southern border, and hinder the illegal flow of drugs, weapons, and individuals. By leveraging any criminally forfeited assets of El Chapo and other murderous drug lords, we can offset the cost of securing our border and make meaningful progress toward delivering on the promises made to the American people," he added.
While congressional lawmakers reached an "agreement in principle" on border security funding this week, Mr. Trump has remained adamant that despite negotiations, his border wall will be built.
"Regardless of wall money, it is being built as we speak!" the president tweeted on Tuesday.