The wife of alleged drug kingpin Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman attended her husband’s trial with the couple’s seven-year-old twin daughters on Thursday morning after missing two hearings earlier this week.
Emma Coronel Aispuro appeared to be in good spirits as she arrived at the courthouse in Brooklyn – donning a rather pricey ensemble.
The former beauty queen’s $100 Carolina Herrera T-shirt, $815 Louis Vuitton sneakers and Gucci sunglasses – all styles from recent seasons – provide convincing evidence that her spending habits haven’t changed while her husband is behind bars.
The girls, Emaly and Maria Joaquina, are also impressively dressed in matching outfits featuring $185 Burberry sneakers.
Coronel had missed hearings on Monday and Tuesday, sparking speculation about the reason for her absence given that she had appeared at every previous day of the six-week trial.
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Emma Coronel Aispuro and her twin daughters are seen arriving at a courthouse in Brooklyn on Thursday ahead of a hearing for her drug kingpin husband Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman
Speculation arose after Coronel (above with daughters Emaly and Maria Joaquina and a friend) missed a hearing on Monday after having appeared at every previous day of the six-week trial
Coronel was seen wearing a rather pricey ensemble that included a $100 Carolina Herrera T-shirt, $815 Louis Vuitton sneakers and a pair of Gucci sunglasses
The 29-year-old appeared to be in good spirits as she approached the court where her husband is standing trial for international drug distribution, money laundering, conspiracy, firearms and running a criminal enterprise – the Sinaloa Cartel
Guzman’s lawyer Eduardo Balarezo had said Coronel was only absent from the trial to spend time with their family and sort out personal business.
He told the
A source had assured the
Earlier this month the 29-year-old posted a picture on Instagram with the caption, ‘few brave people stay to the end, I will never abandon you’, after rumors circulated that she was cheating on Guzman with a singer.
The public prosecutor earlier requested the judge in the case prevent any contact between Coronel and El Chapo to stop the alleged leader of the Sinaloa cartel getting messages outside the trial.
Coronel was born near San Francisco in California and her father was Guzman’s deputy who was jailed along with her brother while operating smuggling routes across the Mexican border with Arizona.
She grew up in the remote village of La Angostura in the state of Durango, Mexico, with her brother, who was arrested at the same time as her father.
Coronel entered the Coffee and Guava Festival beauty pageant in the town of Canelas, Durango, which is where El Chapo proposed to her in 2007.
In the rare interview last week she said she is doing what any wife would do – appear a few feet away from her husband while he stands trial.
A lawyer for her husband told the media she only missed the trial to spend time with the couple’s two children and to sort out personal business
The public prosecutor requested earlier in the trial that the judge stop contact between Coronel and El Chapo to prevent messages getting outside the hearing
Earlier this month Coronel posted a picture on Instagram with the caption: ‘Few brave people stay to the end, I will never abandon you’, after rumors circulated that she was cheating on Guzman with a singer
Guzman was arrested in 2016 six months after escaping from a maximum security prison in Mexico and now faces drug trafficking charges
Coronel told the Spanish-language
‘In one way or another so that he feels, and sees me present, and feels my support.’
Guzman has pleaded not guilty to a 17-count indictment, including international drug distribution, money laundering, conspiracy, firearms and running a criminal enterprise.
During the the trial yesterday one of Guzman’s lieutenants, Pedro Flores, returned to the witness stand for a second day to reveal how he double crossed his boss and secretly recorded their phone conversations.
The 37-year-old told the jury that along with his identical twin brother, Margarito Flores, he moved tons of cocaine in the U.S. for the Sinaloa Cartel.
Prosecutors played part of a call to Guzman that Pedro Flores made on November 15, 2008 to negotiate prices on a shipment of cocaine.
‘Amigo!’ a cheerful voice identified as Guzman’s says at the start of the call, which Flores recorded on a device he bought at a Radio Shack in Mexico. ‘Here at your service,’ Guzman continues, ‘You know that.’
A bundle of cartel cash is seen in this government evidence photo presented at Guzman’s trial
Pedro Flores, 37, (above) testified on Tuesday at Guzman’s (right) trial, saying that with his identical twin brother he distributed some 60 tons of cocaine in the U.S. for the Sinaloa Cartel
Pedro Flores (left) and his identical twin brother Margarito Flores (right) worked their way up from street dealing in Chicago’s Little Village neighborhood to become major traffickers
Flores then asked whether Guzman could cut the per-kilo price they had originally agreed on to $50,000, a discount of $5,000. Guzman sounds happy to help out, as long as Flores was willing to.
‘I’ll pick up the money tomorrow,’ Guzman says with little hesitation. ‘That price is fine.’
Flores asks Guzman in a brief follow-up call on the same day if he could deliver another large shipment of heroin to replenish the Chicago-based distribution network that the twins still controlled from Mexico.
Guzman questions why, since it was his understanding that the Flores twins had already received a shipment from another cartel supplier.
‘Yes, but what they sent was not good,’ he responds. ‘It doesn’t compare to what you had.’
In the end, Flores told the jury, the kingpin feared far and wide ‘agreed to my terms.’
Though the Flores twins ran much of the Sinaloa cartel’s U.S. distribution for years, they were not above more menial tasks, the
Flores said that he was in charge of securing a ‘burner’ cell phone for himself and other cartel members, and tested them by calling a number familiar to all Chicagoans: 312-588-2300.
‘That’s the number for Empire carpeting,’ Flores explained, referring to the Chicago company that for decades has run TV commercials advertising the number in a sing-song jingle.
Flores did not perform the jingle in court, and the Brooklyn court seemed perplexed at the number’s significance.
Accused Mexican drug lord Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman sits during his trial in this courtroom sketch as he appears in Brooklyn federal court in New York on Tuesday
During cross-examination, Guzman’s attorney tried to cast doubt on Flores by tying him to the 2003 murder of Latin Kings boss Rudy ‘Kato’ Rangel Jr in a Little Village barber shop – a death memorialized in a song by the rapper DMX.
The murder was long said to be a jewelry robbery gone wrong, but Guzman’s defense attorney brought up the rumor that Rangel had ripped off the Flores twins for hundreds of kilos of cocaine before his death, and the fact that Margarito Flores soon went on to marry Rangle’s widow.
On the stand, Pedro Flores denied that he had ordered the hit on Rangel. ‘Not for the woman or 200 kilograms?’ the attorney asked.
‘No,’ Flores responded.
Flores’ first day of testimony on Tuesday was the first time that either brother had been seen in public since 2015, when they were both sentenced to 14 years in prison in a sweetheart deal for turning federal informants on the notorious cartel.
In his first day of testimony, Flores said that he had worked his way up from street dealing in Chicago’s Little Village neighborhood, eventually running afoul of a supplier in Mexico, who kidnapped him when he was on the run from a federal indictment.
A count room is seen in this evidence photo that was show at Guzman’s trial in November
Cash is seen in secret compartments of a car in this evidence photo shown at Guzman’s trial
Flores testified that the kidnappers handcuffed and blindfolded him, and took him to a remote house where they held him for several days until his brother secured his freedom, the
His brother’s first words to him, he said, were that he smelled bad and: ‘I met Chapo.’
In exchange for dealing with the kidnapper, Guzman wanted the twins to use their experience distributing cocaine in the U.S. for the Sinaloa cartel, Flores said.
Flores described his first meeting with Guzman in 2005, saying he was taken by private plane to a rough landing strip on the incline of a mountain.
Driving from the airstrip to the compound, Flores said he saw grisly signs of the cartel’s violence, including a naked man chained to a tree, who crouched and stared at the truck as it passed.
Guzman appeared from the thatched-roof concrete villa wearing a hat, with a shiny handgun in his waistband and an AK-47 propped nearby, and his first words were to tease Flores for wearing shorts, the court heard.
‘He said with all that money, I couldn’t afford the rest of the pants?’ Flores said.
Another Sinaloa cartel leader, Ismael ‘El Mayo’ Zambada, was there for the negotiations, Flores said.
‘You guys have my respect,’ he quoted Zambada as saying. ‘Imagine if you guys were triplets.’
Flores said that the brothers used their know-how to turn Chicago into a national distribution hub for the Sinaloa cartel, taking advantage of the city’s central location.
As he grew more comfortable with Guzman, whom he called ‘The Man’, Flores began to give him regular gifts – gold plated guns, which he admits were too heavy and inspired by watching too many movies, as well as a gag gift of a pair of jean shorts like the ones he wore to their first meeting, given in a box shaped like a Viagra pill.
The drugs flowed north in trucks filled with fruit and vegetables – sometimes so much of them that it affected market prices in Chicago when the brothers dumped their cover goods, Flores said.
Authorities escort Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman, center, from a plane to a waiting caravan of SUVs at Long Island MacArthur Airport, in Ronkonkoma, N.Y. in January 2017
One time, the brothers received a shipment of cocaine in a truck full of live sheep. Flores said they were baffled about what to do with the sheep, and eventually paid a friend $10,000 to get rid of them.
‘I’m looking at a bunch of live sheep,’ Flores said. ‘What are we gonna do with them?’
‘I was concerned the cover loads were getting kinda weak,’ he recalled.
Around 2008, Flores said he began to fear for his life when the cartel split into two factions, with both sides insisting that the twins deal exclusively with them.
The bloody civil war within the cartel meant ‘we were in a lose-lose situation,’ he said, ‘because we had to choose a side.’
Flores contacted the DEA and began working as an informant, even making recordings of Guzman with a digital recorder that he bought at a Mexican Radio Shack.
Guzman has denied that he was the leader of the Sinaloa cartel, saying he is being set up by shady government cooperators. If convicted, he faces life in prison without parole.