News – UK – She was 17 when she met a notorious drug lord. Now El Chapo’s wife is facing her own legal crisis


An Australian man has been arrested in Morocco and is at risk of extradition to Saudi Araba on unspecified allegations, say human rights groups

Like all girls competing in the coffee and guava festival beauty pageant in northern Mexico, 17-year-old Emma Coronel Aispuro had to throw a party to announce her candidacy

But Ms. Coronel Aispuro’s event had a rather unusual guest: the most powerful drug trafficker in the world

On the day of the event in 2007, a motorcade of 200 scooters, driven by armed men in black clothing and ski masks, rolled into the tiny Mexican town of Canelas

Then six small planes descended from the sky. On board was Joaquín Guzmán Loera, known to the world as El Chapo

“As if it were part of his wardrobe, he wore an AK-47 goat horn assault rifle on his chest,” wrote Mexican journalist Patricia Davila in Proceso magazine

Canelas residents avoided media attention on the night a local girl fell in love with a drug servant

The city is ultimately at the heart of a region known as Mexico’s Golden Triangle

The remote and mountainous region near Mexico’s border with the United States is a major hub of marijuana and opium production. If you divulge secrets here, you can be killed

But Canelas locals say the 47-year-old drug lord and teenage beauty queen were engaged by the end of the party

Days later, El Chapo’s new fiancé was also crowned Queen of the Coffee and Guava Festival

To this day, Emma Coronel Aispuro insists that she won herself and not, as Mexican media have reported, because her future husband bribed the judges

The beauty pageant would be the first of many cases where Ms. Coronel claims she was ignorant of the allegations that are swirling around her husband

“I don’t know my husband for who they want him to be,” Ms. Coronel Aispuro told the New York Times days before he was sentenced to life imprisonment for drug trafficking, money laundering, kidnapping and murder

“I rather admire him than the person I met and married”

She claimed they ran a humble irrigation farm, and she was just a devoted wife and mother

But two years after El Chapo was mixed with leg irons from a New York courtroom, Coronel Aispuro, now 31, was arrested at Dulles International Airport

US authorities claim she was not only the narco’s wife, but allegedly a player in his international drug empire

As surprising as the news of her arrest may have been, she wasn’t the first Coronel to get into trouble over alleged cartel links

Her father, Inés Coronel Barrera, was arrested with hundreds of pounds of marijuana in a warehouse in 2013, along with one of his sons and other men

El Chapo himself was a refugee when they met and moved from one hiding place to another in the mountains of Sinaloa after breaking out of prison in 2001

Ms. Coronel Aispuro told the LA Times that she and El Chapo started out as friends and that he won over her with the way he treated her

Whether it was actually the love match she had hinted at or an “arrangement” that was supposed to strengthen her father’s role in the cartel, as some reports suggest, Ms. Coronel married Aispuro in 2007 at the age of 18 Birthday El Chapo

El Chapo has been something of a mysterious folk figure in Mexico for decades, but the role of Ms. Coronel Aispuro after her marriage seems even less clear, the two-time US-Mexican national gave birth to twins in 2011 but remained largely out of the public eye / p>

Reporters following the El Chapo case say Ms. Coronel Aispuro did not give them interviews but apparently had a change of heart in recent years The former beauty queen has also been increasingly present online

“Coronel’s celebrity cannot be understood without her Instagram account. In that sense, she is a woman of her time – we have to remember that she is 31 years old,” said the lecturer at the School of Law at Wollongong University Macarena Iribarne

“Social media and reality shows have given women and men associated with the cartels a platform today that did not exist in the past”

Ms. Coronel Aispuro has amassed hundreds of thousands of followers on Instagram despite having posted very few posts despite claiming that she does not manage the account herself

“[From] a strategic perspective [being on social media] isn’t a very smart thing because if you’re connected to the better known international [cartel] it ultimately doesn’t seem like a good idea to have that notoriety, “said Dr Iribarne

But it was her husband’s New York Trial in 2018 that catapulted Coronel Aispuro to greater fame

She appeared in court every day in designer clothes and waved to Guzman when he was accused of a huge drug conspiracy

One day her twin girls in matching dresses were mixed up in court, on another she orchestrated a different kind of unity and wore the same velvet jacket as her husband

And when details of how Guzmán’s lovers were used to advance his narcotics operation were told in court, she showed no emotion

But it was during this process that the alleged role of Ms. Coronel Aispuro in the famous El Chapo prison escape was revealed

The story is like something out of a Hollywood movie. In July 2015, El Chapo disappeared in a 1A 6-kilometer tunnel dug into his cell in a maximum security prison

“It was a very humiliating moment for the Mexican government A motorcycle was waiting for him in the tunnel, the whole thing was ventilated, “said legal expert Luis Gómez Romero

Years later, during Guzman’s trial, a senior cartel member informed the court that it was Ms. Coronel Aispuro who was meeting with him and Guzman’s sons to help carry out escape plans

They were given a plot of land near the prison, arranged weapons, brought an armored truck and, according to testimony, even had a GPS watch smuggled into Guzman’s cell

Ms. Coronel Aispuro did not appear to be shaken by the revelations, but continued to claim that they were normal, law-abiding citizens

“All I can say is that I don’t have to be ashamed of anything, I’m not perfect, but I consider myself a good person who has never intentionally hurt anyone,” she said at the end of the process

El Chapo was found guilty by a jury in February 2019 and sentenced to life imprisonment.He is currently serving his tenure in a facility so secure it is called Alcatraz of the Rockies

Subsequently, Ms. Coronel Aispuro published a statement in which she thanked her mother and sister for taking care of the twins in court

She later talked about launching a clothing line in the United States and appeared on a November 2019 reality show about families of drug dealers called Cartel Crew People would have judged her without knowing her

With more time having passed after her husband was convicted and there has been no news of criminal proceedings against her, Ms. Coronel may have thought she was safe

In the meantime, authorities were quietly building a case on you alleging that Ms. Coronel Aispuro conspired to “knowingly and intentionally” broadcast heroin, cocaine, marijuana and methamphetamine

“The defendant worked closely with the command and control structure of the drug trafficking organization known as the Sinaloa Cartel, particularly with her husband,” said US deputy attorney Anthony Narduzzi, deputy head of the narcotics and dangerous department Justice Department drugs section said on Tuesday

After Ms. Coronel Aispuro appeared in court, she was ordered to remain in custody until her defense suggests a bail package. She has not yet filed a request

Luis Gómez Romero was a practicing lawyer in Mexico and adviser to the transitional government of former President Vicente Fox in 2000

He is now a lecturer in Human Rights and Constitutional Law at the University of Wollongong and doesn’t believe Ms. Coronel Aispuro was a big fish within the Sinaloa drug cartel

He suggests that she was more likely to be targeted because of her celebrity status and that her arrest was a “symbolic” move by the United States

“It doesn’t seem like she plays a major role in the cartel compared to those played by El Chapo’s sons,” he said

“Relations between Mexico and the United States cooled very quickly after [Joe] Biden’s tenure began”

A central point of contention was the recent discharge of a suspected drug baron nicknamed The Godfather

Salvador Cienfuegos, a powerful military general, was arrested in Los Angeles in October 2020 on drug charges, but the Trump administration sent him to Mexico to be tried in his home country

Just five days before Mr Biden was sworn in as president, General Cienfuegos was acquitted by Mexican authorities who claimed he had never met any criminals

“The arrest of Emma Coronel, apparently without warning, is seen as a message from the Biden administration that the US will continue these high profile arrests with or without the consent of the current Mexican government,” said Dr Gomez said

Behind the Hollywood portrayal of the drug wars that characters like El Chapo and Ms. Coronel Aispuro can glorify, says Dr Gomez, however, that there is a terrible reality

“The official death toll for the drug wars is around 150000 Mexicans who lost their lives in drug-related crimes, and 73000 have disappeared, “he said

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Joaquín Guzmán, Emma Coronel Aispuro, Sinaloa Cartel, Drug Cartel

News – GB – She was 17 when she met an infamous drug lord. Now El Chapo’s wife is facing her own legal crisis
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