Emma Coronel Aispuro, the wife of Mexican drug kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, pleaded guilty Thursday to charges that she “aided and abetted” her husband’s narcotics empire.
Appearing in a Washington, D.C. court Wednesday — four months after her February 2021 arrest — Coronel Aispuro pleaded guilty to three counts of conspiring to distribute illegal drugs, conspiring to launder money and engaging in financial dealings with the Sinaloa drug cartel. Additionally, Coronel Aispuro was also accused of assisting her husband’s 2015 prison escape.
When sentenced, Coronel Aispuro faces a life in prison; however, because she reached a plea agreement with federal prosecutors, Coronel Aispuro’s attorney Jeffrey Lichtman said he’s hoping for a sentence significantly less than the statutory minimum sentence of 10 years.
“She is very happy to put this behind her,” Lichtman told the media following the guilty plea (via the Associated Press). “She didn’t expect to get arrested after her husband received life in prison. So, this is obviously a troubling time. But we’re going to get past it.”
Anthony Nardozzi, Deputy Chief of Litigation at the Justice Department, told the court Thursday, “The defendant aided and abetted the objectives of the Sinaloa Cartel, and it allowed Guzman to resume his leadership role at the Sinaloa Cartel and in doing so, furthered the cartel’s drug trafficking business.”
Guzman is currently serving a life sentence plus 30 years following his conviction in February 2019 on 10 criminal charges including conspiracy to traffick drugs and conspiracy to commit murder, money laundering, and manufacture and distribution of cocaine, methamphetamine, heroin and marijuana.