Jaoquin Guzman, better known as Mexican Sinaloa Cartel drug boss “El Chapo”, has been pinned with new and shocking evidence against him in his court case this week.
A former employee of El Chapo’s turned informant, Tirso Martinez Sanchez, testified against him in Brooklyn stating that El Chapo operated a train line that moved cocaine shipments to New York City, all the way from Mexico. Under the guise of a legitimate cooking oil business, El Chapo and his constituents are said to have made $500 million to $800 million off of their drug sales through the operation.
Image via Getty/ALFREDO ESTRELLA/AFP
According to the testimony of the informant and El Chapo himself, El Chapo began managing the convoy in 2000, following the death of the former manager who apparently shot himself. Apparently, another cartel member operating the train had died during plastic surgery, which sounds like a plot line straight out of the sequel to Desperado.
How did they manage to get away with the smuggle, at least at the time?
Sanchez told jurors that the cocaine shipments would be moved to NYC via large train tankers, that were disguised as loads of cooking oil. The cartel would take out the oil and pack kilos of cocaine into the tanks. Next, they’d add some oil back into the tanks, adding some to the packs of cocaine to throw off officials and drug dogs.
Sanchez then stated that the drug-filled trains would arrive at a warehouse in New Jersey, where box trucks would transport the cargo to a designated fast food stop like McDonald’s or Burger King. There, according to Sanchez, “We would tell them what car held the drugs, and hand them over the keys”.
Lastly, the millions of dollars made from the deal were funneled back to Mexico through various luxury items.
Though El Chapo had full control of the operation, he explained to jurors that he wanted out of the operation following a few raids from law enforcement. According to El Chapo, “They [the Sinaloa Cartel] wanted to kill me because I had lost the train route, that means of transport,” and furthermore, “I just didn’t want to keep going.”
Obviously, El Chapo’s own testimony adds more confirmation to the extent of his involvement, and he faces life in prison.