While you would expect a drug lord to have many wives in his lifetime, the Mexican drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán only had one. He pleaded guilty only to drug trafficking and money laundering charges. Thirty-one-year-old Emma Coronel Espuro confessed to participating in her husband’s multi-billion dollar drug cartel business.
On July 17, 2019, Guzmán was sentenced to life imprisonment and thirty years. In addition, he was also ordered to seize assets worth over $12.6 billion. About two years later, Espuro pleaded guilty in a federal Washington court.
The Arrest and Trial of Emma Coronel Espuro
In February, El Chapo’s wife, Espuro, was arrested at Dulles International Airport in Virginia on charges of international drug trafficking. Since then, he has been detained and awaits his trial.
Now, she stands in court and through a plea with federal prosecutors pleaded guilty to three federal crimes. Her charges include money-laundering, being involved in a transaction with a foreign drug trafficker, and knowingly and knowingly taking heroin. , cocaine, marijuana, and conspiracy to distribute. Methamphetamine for many years in relation to El Chapo.
Espuro’s attorney, Jeffrey Lichtman, said that before the hearing, Espuro discussed how she wanted to someday return to her twin daughters, just like many of the wives who have been sentenced to prison. “It’s an arm’s length plea agreement,” Lichtman said. “He’s happy to take the responsibility… move on (with his life).”
“He’s very happy to have it behind him,” Lichtman said. “She didn’t expect to be arrested after her husband found life in prison. So, it’s definitely a disturbing time. But we’re going to get through it.”
However, prosecutors have claimed that he “worked closely with the command-and-control structure” of El Chapo’s cartel and deliberately conspired to distribute large quantities of drugs that were to be smuggled into the United States.
Espuro’s marriage to Guzman
Once an American beauty queen, she married El Chapo in 2007 when she was eighteen years old. Aispuro’s father, Ines Coronel Barreras, was one of Guzmán’s top representatives. In August 2011, she gave birth to twin girls in Los Angeles, California.
When Guzmán was arrested and put on trial in New York, Espuro was present for each trial lasting thirty days. She came into limelight after hearing allegations of rape and murder against her husband. During an emotional testimony by one of Guzmán’s mistresses, Espuro was seen laughing silently.
In a separate hearing, the husband and wife were seen wearing matching velvet jackets, taken by the public as a symbol of solidarity and loyalty to their husbands. At the end of her trial, she said, “I don’t know my husband as the person they’re trying to show him, but I admire him as the person I met, and whom I was married.”
el chapo’s escape from prison
The infamous drug king has been arrested thrice and is on the run twice. During Espuro’s trial, he was accused of helping Guzmán escape from another prison that took place in 2015. Additionally, he was also charged with participating in a possible prison escape for Guzmán in 2017, before he was eventually extradited to the United States. He declined to comment on both these allegations.
In 2015, El Chapo escaped from the Federal Social Redemption Center through a hidden tunnel. He was last seen by guards near the shower area, which has limited surveillance. After losing his visibility for about twenty minutes, the guard went to check his cell only to find that he had escaped.
While in custody, a GPS device was smuggled into the prison, where his accomplices could pinpoint the exact location of his cell. His men dug a tunnel large enough for Guzmán to escape on a small motorbike. The tunnel was equipped with lighting, air ducts and high-quality building materials.
Anthony Nardozzi, deputy head of trial at the Justice Department, said, “The defendant aided and abetted the motives of the Sinaloa cartel, and this allowed Guzmán to resume his leadership role in the Sinaloa cartel, and by doing so would have been a part of the cartel.” He furthered the business of drug trafficking.
Emma Coronel Aspuro will be sentenced on 15 September, possibly completing the fate of several of the criminals’ wives and associates. Do you think Espuro is one of the most powerful wives in drug trafficking history and if so, do you think she will keep her power behind bars? Tell us below!