By: Lucas Manfredi
Emma Coronel Aispuro, the 31-year-old wife of Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman Loera, leader of a Mexican drug trafficking organization known as the Sinaloa Cartel, was arrested Monday in Virginia on charges related to her alleged involvement in international drug trafficking.
According to court documents, Coronel Aispuro is charged with participating in a conspiracy to one kilogram or more of heroin, five kilograms or more of cocaine, 1,000 kilograms or more of marijuana, and 500 grams or more of methamphetamines for unlawful importation into the U.S.
Prosecutors allege that Coronel Aispuro was not only aware of Guzman's role as the leader of the violent Sinaloa cartel, but she also allegedly "relayed messages" between 2012 and 2014 on behalf of Guzman in "furtherance of drug trafficking activities" while her husband attempted to avoid capture by Mexican authorities.
Following his arrest in Feb. 2014, Coronel Aispuro allegedly continued to deliver messages she received from Guzman during her prison visits, which were not monitored by Mexican authorities, according to prosecutors.
Additionally, Coronel Aispuro is alleged to have conspired with Guzman’s sons and a now cooperating witness to assist Guzman in his July 2015 escape from Altiplano prison, located in Almoloya de Juarez, Mexico, via an underground tunnel, according to prosecutors.
The plot involved purchasing a piece of land near the prison, firearms and an armored truck. In addition, the group discussed smuggling Guzman a GPS watch so they could "pinpoint his exact whereabouts so as to construct the tunnel with an entry point accessible to him," according to court documents.
Coronel Aispuro is scheduled to make her initial appearance in federal court on Tuesday in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia via video conference.