Mexican Drug Kingpin El Chapo Guzmán's Fairy Tale: I'm Innocent And Just A Farmer

Apr 1 2014, 4:04pm CDT | by

As recently as two years ago, Forbes estimated Mexican drug lord Joaquín ‘El Chapo’ Guzmán’s net worth at $1 billion. Now the jailed CEO of the powerful Sinaloa Cartel has told Mexican prosecutors that he is “just a farmer” who earns 20,000 pesos a year ($1,500 dollars), according to a transcript of his preliminary interrogation obtained by the Mexican daily Excelsior .

El Chapo is described in Forbes ’ 2013 Most Powerful People list as the world’s most powerful drug trafficker. The Sinaloa Cartel is responsible for an estimated 25% of all illegal drugs that enter the U.S. via Mexico. Law enforcement sources estimate that the cartel’s annual revenues may exceed $3 billion.

But El Chapo claims he is an innocent man. He told authorities that he doesn’t “belong to any cartel or have any cartel,” that he is a farmer that grows corn, sorghum, and

safflower. He also said that he does not have a cell phone or email, that he seldom drinks and that he has no tattoos on his body.

The summary of the interrogation published by Excelsior does not say if he was asked how is it that a modest farmer escaped from a high-security jail in 2001 after bribing jail guards and local officials. (The new head of Mexico’s National Commission on Security recently made assurances that El Chapo will not escape again and said that he is under “special surveillance” in Mexico’s Almoloya’s high-security prison.)

Needless to say, no one believes El Chapo’s nonsense. Even his former accomplices are unwilling to vouch for him. Carlos Manuel Hoo Ramírez, a former army commando described by DEA as El Chapo’s “high tech guy,” bodyguard and personal assistant, exposed his lies. Hoo Ramírez, who was arrested along with El Chapo on February 22 in the Mexican Pacific state of Sinaloa, confirmed to Mexican investigators that he and El Chapo used tunnels and sewers to move between safe houses. Hoo Ramírez, also known as El Candor, further revealed that Guzmán always had two planes on standby with pilots ready to fly him away on a minute’s notice and switched Blackberry cell phones every week.

Hoo Ramírez also spoke about El Chapo’s close connection to Rafael Caro Quintero, the infamous former leader of the Guadalajara cartel best known for ordering the 1985 assassination of DEA agent Enrique Camarena. Hoo Ramírez said that soon after Caro Quintero was released from prison on a legal technicality in 2013, El Chapo went to visit him at an undisclosed location. The U.S. has requested Caro Quintero’s arrest and extradition.

It’s not the first time Guzmán has refused to give information to the authorities. During the 13 years that he was behind bars he also kept his mouth shut. It’s possible that after Hoo Ramírez’s revelations, El Chapo was pressured into changing his fairy story and provided real information on the cartel’s operations and partners both in Mexico and the dozens countries where the Sinaloa Cartel operates. More so if the Mexican authorities offered him incentives in return.

Perhaps during his first round in jail, where he lived like a King, El Chapo watched the Godfather and got inspired by Don Corleone’s claims that he was just a dedicated olive oil importer.

Twitter: @DoliaEstevez

Source: Forbes Business

 
 

Don't miss ...

 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/30" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Briton in Sierra Leone contracts Ebola virus
London, Aug 24 (IANS) The British Department of Health confirmed Saturday that a Briton living in Sierra Leone has tested positive for Ebola.
 
 
Europe's Galileo satellites launched into wrong orbit
Paris, Aug 23 (IANS) European satellite launch company Arianespace announced Saturday that the two satellites of Europe's Galileo satellite navigation system launched Friday from the European spaceport in French Guiana were delivered into the wrong orbit.
 
 
UN to radically scale up fight against Ebola
Monrovia, Aug 23 (IANS/WAM) The UN has vowed to radically scale up support to fight the Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa and said more health workers will be brought to Liberia to deal with the disease.
 
 
White dwarf stars formed mysterious supernova
London, Aug 23 (IANS) Supernova 2014J is 11 million light years away from earth and was only seen by chance at the University of London Observatory this year.
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

Maisie Williams passes driving test
Maisie Williams has passed her driving test. The 'Game of Thrones' actress, who turned 17 in April, took to her Instagram account yesterday (08.22.14) to announce that she's now got her full UK driving license. The...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Shia LaBeouf calls police after female stalker found in his home
Shia LaBeouf called the police after he found a female intruder in his home last week. The 28-year-old actor panicked and rang the emergency services when a strange woman turned up at his door in Los Angeles after...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Liam Hemsworth buys Malibu home for $6.8m
Liam Hemsworth has reportedly splashed out $6.8 million on a new home in Malibu. The 'Hunger Games' hunk - who split from his fiancée Miley Cyrus last year - forked out the impressive sum after falling in love with the...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Briton in Sierra Leone contracts Ebola virus
London, Aug 24 (IANS) The British Department of Health confirmed Saturday that a Briton living in Sierra Leone has tested positive for Ebola. "We can confirm that a British national residing in Sierra Leone has tested...
Read more on Business Balla
 
Political stalemate continues, as opposition wants Sharif's head (Roundup)
Lahore/Islamabad, Aug 23 (IANS) Pakistan's political stalemate continued Saturday amid political discussions by the government to find a solution and protest leaders Imran Khan and Tahir-ul-Qadri refusing to give up...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Two British Indians charged with murder
London, Aug 23 (IANS) Two British Indian men were Saturday charged with stabbing and murdering a man on a London street, a media report said. Gaurav Sharma, 33, and Jaswinder Singh, 27, have been accused of attacking...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
11 militants killed in Libyan air strikes
Tripoli, Aug 23 (IANS) At least 11 Islamist militants were killed and 20 injured in air strikes in Libya Saturday, Xinhua reported citing military sources. Mohammed Ghiryany, spokesman for the Islamist armed group,...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
31 held in Hong Kong drug bust
Beijing, Aug 23 (IANS) At least 31 people were arrested for possessing drugs in two unlicensed bars in Hong Kong, police said Saturday. Hong Kong police seized drugs worth over 640,000 HK dollars (about 82,580...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Ten killed in attacks across Iraq
Baghdad, Aug 23 (IANS) Ten people were killed and 50 wounded in a wave of attacks across Iraq Saturday, security sources said. The deadliest attack occurred around mid-day when a suicide bomber blew an explosive-laden...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Egyptian court postpones trial of Morsi, 130 others
Cairo, Aug 23 (IANS) A criminal court in Egypt Saturday postponed the trial of ousted president Mohamad Morsi and 130 other defendants in a jailbreak case till Sep 15. The case was postponed to listen to the...
Read more on Politics Balla