El Chapo’s wife pleads not guilty to drug trafficking

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Washington – AFP –

The wife of Mexican drug baron “El Chapo”, Emma Coronel, who was arrested last February at Washington airport, pleaded guilty, Thursday, to participating in drug trafficking, as part of an agreement with the US judiciary.

During a hearing before federal judge in Washington, Rudolph Contreras, the 31-year-old former beauty queen said she was “guilty” on three counts against her: participating in drug trafficking, laundering financial instruments and dealing with a foreign drug dealer.

Prosecutors confirm that Coronel, a holder of US and Mexican citizenship, helped El Chapo escape from a Mexican prison in 2015. El Chapo escaped from a 1.5-mile-long tunnel he made from under the showerhead in his cell, in an operation that dealt a severe blow to the Mexican authorities. .

Coronel’s verdict is scheduled for September 15. Coronel theoretically faces up to ten years in prison, but a reduced sentence is expected, after pleading guilty under the agreement with the US judiciary.

A source familiar with the file reported on Tuesday that this agreement had been reached.

“El Chapo” (64 years) is in prison after being sentenced in 2019 to life imprisonment, following a trial that was held amid tight security in New York, and Emma Coronel participated in her sessions almost daily. He is serving his sentence in a maximum security prison in Colorado. For many years until his extradition to the United States in 2017, El Chapo was considered the most powerful drug dealer in the world.





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