Emma Coronel is sentenced to 3 years in prison in the US

Emma Coronel, wife of the Mexican capo “El Chapo” Guzmán, was sentenced this Tuesday by the United States justice to three years in prison for her participation in the powerful poster from Sinaloa led by her husband.

The Judge Rudolph Contreras, of the federal court in Washington, imposed on the 32-year-old former beauty queen a sentence of less than the four years requested by the prosecution, recognizing that the defendant was a teenager when she married Guzmán, and that she also admitted her guilt after his arrest in February 2021.

Coronel, with dual US and Mexican citizenship, was arrested on February 22 at Dulles International Airport, on the outskirts of Washington, for alleged “complicity” in her husband Joaquín “el Chapo” Guzmán’s drug trafficking business. , and since then she has been detained near the US capital.

On June 10, he pleaded guilty to three charges brought against him: conspiracy to distribute illegal drugs in the United States, conspiracy to launder narcotics money, and participation in financial transactions with a drug trafficking organization.


Colonel, niece of Ignacio Coronel, one of the leaders of the Sinaloa cartel, was born on July 2, 1989 in California, but spent most of his life in Mexico. She married “El Chapo”, 32 years her senior, in 2007, when she was still a teenager and with him she had two twin daughters, Emali Guadalupe and María Joaquina.

Between her wedding and her arrest in February, Coronel profited “in multiple ways” and “knowingly” from her husband’s trafficking proceeds, according to US court documents.

Prosecutors said he admitted to having knowledge of the importation into the United States of at least 450 kilograms of cocaine, 90 kilograms of heroin, 45 kilograms of methamphetamine and 90 tons of marijuana.

What’s more, Colonel made a profit by renting properties bought with drug money and served as an “intermediary” between members of the cartel and her husband when he was imprisoned in Mexico.

Too helped “plan and coordinate” the spectacular prison break the drug lord in Mexico through a tunnel in 2015, investigators noted.

Joaquín Archivaldo Guzmán Loera, currently 64 years old, was considered the most powerful drug trafficker in the world until his arrest in 2016 and his extradition to the United States in 2017. Sentenced to life imprisonment in July 2019 in New York, he is serving his sentence in prison maximum security ADX in Florence, Colorado.

“An important paper”

Coronel’s lawyer, Mariel Colón, denied that her client had cooperated with prosecutors to have her sentence reduced or that she was going to benefit from the protected witness program.

“She has some girls in Mexico and it is very well known what happens to cooperators, to cooperators’ families. So why expose, risk the lives of her girls, the lives of her family?”, Declared Colón in an interview on November 18 with the Univisión network.

But drug trafficking experts take it for granted that Coronel cooperated with the US justice system.

“It is very clear that she collaborated, which is not surprising either,” Michael Lettieri, who leads the Resource Project Against Violence in Mexico, affiliated with the University of California, San Diego, told AFP.

The trial against “El Chapo” lasted more than three months, between November 2018 and February 2019, and Coronel attended almost daily, a high visibility that according to some observers may have influenced his subsequent arrest.

Lettieri assured that although the leadership of women is generally underestimated in the world of drug trafficking, Coronel “was an important part of the operations” of the Sinaloa cartel.

But according to the expert, the conviction of Coronel, like that of so many people linked to drug trafficking, will not mean changes in the flow of drugs given the enormous demand in the United States and the “deficit of the rule of law in Mexico.”


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