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Judge sentences 'El Chapo's' wife to three years in prison

Judge sentences 'El Chapo's' wife to three years in prison
Emma Coronel Aispuro, wife of Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzman, exits Federal Court in New York City on February 11, 2019. She was sentenced to three years in prison Tuesday for participating in her husband's drug empire. File Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

Nov. 30 (UPI) -- A federal judge in Washington, D.C., sentenced the wife of Mexican drug kingpin Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, Emma Coronel Aispuro, to three years in prison Tuesday after she pleaded guilty to charges related to her husband's operations.

In addition to the prison time, District Judge Rudolph Contreras sentenced Coronel Aispuro, 31, to four years of supervised release and ordered her to forfeit $1.5 million. She will receive credit for time already served.

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She pleaded guilty in June to three federal charges including aiding and abetting the distribution of heroin, cocaine, marijuana and methamphetamines, conspiracy to commit money laundering, and engaging in transactions that helped Guzman evade sanctions. She was accused of the crimes as part of her role in Guzman's Sinaloa drug cartel in Mexico.

A federal jury in New York convicted Guzman in 2019 for her role as the leader of the Sinaloa cartel. He was sentenced to life in prison and is serving his sentence at a super-max prison.

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Coronel Aispuro, who was born in the United States but grew up in Mexico, agreed to cooperate with prosecutors. The former beauty queen is the mother of twin girls with Guzman. Her father, Coronel Barreras, was a Sinaloa cartel lieutenant who's also serving prison time for drug trafficking and firearms charges.

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Prosecutors asked Contreras to sentence Coronel Airpuro to 48 months in prison, nine months shy of the sentencing guideline minimum, and five years of supervised release in addition to the forfeiture. She could have received a maximum of 14 years in prison.

The judge said he considered Coronel Airpuro's minimal role in the cartel, her cooperation with prosecutors and the fact that she was 17 when she met Guzman in determining her sentence.

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"Good luck," he told her, according to CNN. "Hope you raise your twins in a different environment than what you have experienced until today. Good luck."

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