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The wife of Mexican drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman plead guilty in US federal court for helping her husband run the Sinaloa smuggler cartel. At a district court in Washington D.C., Emma Coronel Aispuro was found guilty of three counts of conspiring to distribute illegal drugs, conspiring to launder money, and engaging in financial dealings with the Sinaloa drug cartel.

She also admitted to helping her husband escape from a Mexican prison in 2015 as part of her plea agreement. Asides from facing a potential life sentence for the drug distribution charge, Aispuro faces two other counts against her carry maximum prison terms of 20 years and ten years. US District Judge Rudolph Contreras set a tentative sentencing date of September 15.

The 31-year-old former beauty queen was arrested in February at Dulles International Airport in Virginia on allegations she had relayed messages to help Guzman traffic drugs from 2012 to early 2014. She kept delivering messages while visiting him in a Mexican prison following his arrest in February 2014.

US prosecutors said that as Mexico’s most powerful drug lord, Guzman ran a cartel responsible for smuggling cocaine and other drugs into the U.S. for 25 years. Prosecutors said the Sinaloa cartel smuggled more than 450,000kg of cocaine, 90,000kg of heroin, 45,000kg of methamphetamine, and about 90,000kg of cannabis into the U.S.

Guzman, 64, was recaptured after escaping from prison and extradited to the U.S. He was convicted in 2019 of masterminding the Sinaloa cartel’s multibillion-dollar drug enterprise. Guzman was sentenced by a federal court in New York to life in prison plus another 30 years and is now carrying out his term in a maximum-security prison in Florence, Colorado.

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