- In 1998, whilst in a Mexican jail, “El Chapo” Guzmán contacted US officers, providing data in trade for leniency.
- DEA brokers secretly met with the jailed kingpin, however america executive by no means took his be offering.
- As Guzmán rose to and fell from energy over the following twenty years, the clandestine jailhouse assembly has remained in large part unknown.
Ciudad Juarez, MEXICO – Within the past due Nineteen Nineties, Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzmán secretly attempted from in the back of bars to chop a handle the DEA to surrender his competitors and get immunity in go back.
Guzmán was once jailed on the time however nonetheless in command of the Sinaloa cartel. His try to make a handle america has remained in large part unknown for greater than twenty years.
In keeping with New York-based journalist Noah Hurowitz, who lined Guzmán’s trial in america and detailed Guzmán’s try to snitch in his new book, the kingpin presented data at the rival Arellano Felix and Beltran Leyva cartels and on his personal spouse, Hector “El Guero” Palma, in trade for private get advantages.
In 1998, Guzmán was once imprisoned in Puente Grande jail in southwestern Mexico when he despatched a request via his brother-in-law to Joe Bond, a Mexican-American DEA agent stationed in Mexico Town, asking to satisfy within his jail mobile.
“I discovered in regards to the assembly by way of courtroom paperwork, after which I met with Joe Bond in Washington who confirmed me the interior file he wrote for the DEA after assembly ‘El Chapo,'” Hurowitz advised Insider.
After protecting Guzmán’s courtroom hearings in Brooklyn in 2018 and 2019, Hurowitz traveled to Los angeles Tuna, Guzmán’s place of birth in Sinaloa state, to talk to those that knew him ahead of he turned into a mythical cartel determine.
Hurowitz discovered that “El Chapo” sought after to provide Bond detailed data, comparable to operations and names and whereabouts of competitors, in go back offering for protection for his circle of relatives and for losing the costs towards him in america.
“The Arellano Felix, El Chapo warned, have been within the observe of sending double brokers to paintings as informants for the DEA and accumulate intel via their interactions with the gringos,” Hurowitz writes.
In keeping with the guide, the assembly — which integrated Jose Patiño, an authentic with the Mexican Lawyer Normal’s workplace who facilitated the DEA brokers’ access into Puente Grande — lasted greater than two hours.
Bond advised Hurowitz that Guzmán was once now not anticipating the assembly, as he and fellow agent Larry Villalobos had agreed to peer him in the back of bars however did not say after they would talk over with.
The usage of faux IDs, they posed as sociologists who sought after to talk to “El Chapo” privately. It wasn’t till he entered the room that Bond printed he was once “Tito,” the name of the game identify he had agreed to make use of for the assembly.
Bond offered Patiño along with his actual identify and advised “El Chapo” they might totally consider the Mexican authentic. Each brokers advised “El Chapo” they could not be offering any promises or conform to his requests, however Guzmán saved speaking.
“In 24 hours, he mentioned, he may give the DEA and the [Attorney General’s office] data at the whereabouts of drug storages, guns caches, the gang’s complete infrastructure, and corrupt officers in Tepic,” Hurowitz writes, relating to the capital of the state of Nayarit, which borders Sinaloa to the south.
Guzmán additionally snitched on his industry spouse, Hector “El Guero” Palma, who had ordered the killing of Guzmán’s different brother-in-law.
Palma was extradited to Mexico in 2016 after serving 9 years of a 16-year sentence in america. He stays imprisoned in Mexico after a July decision by way of an appeals courtroom that blocked a decrease courtroom’s order to loose him.
The DEA brokers additionally requested “El Chapo” about politicians who may well be operating for his or different felony organizations, in keeping with Hurowitz’s guide, however Guzmán declined to percentage to any extent further main points, pronouncing “it was once too unhealthy” to snitch on them.
Bond advised Hurowitz that the DEA by no means agreed at the deal and that was once the remaining time they met with him. Bond mentioned US prosecutors requested him to forestall assembly Guzmán because the kingpin may “hurt long term courtroom instances towards him.”
All the males who helped Bond to get in contact with “El Chapo” and get within the jail to satisfy him are actually lifeless, together with Patiño. Maximum of them have been murdered within the years that adopted.
Patiño died underneath suspicious cases. His frame and the ones of 3 different Mexican officers operating with the DEA have been present in a automotive that seemed to have swerved right into a ditch, however later examinations discovered their heads were overwhelmed they usually had lacerations far and wide their our bodies and interior organs.
“Bond nonetheless wonders if his pal’s ugly demise got here because of the assembly at Puente Grande,” Hurowitz wrote. “That is the value such a lot of truthful police officers paid in Mexico, ahead of and because.”
In 2001, Guzmán made the primary of a number of jail escapes. Whilst at the run, he made his be offering to the DEA once more, but it surely went with out answer.
Hurowitz mentioned this little-known tale of tried betrayal displays a shameful truth of existence inside of felony organizations, the place capos and henchmen are steadily portrayed as unfailingly dependable.
“We have now this figuring out that Mexican cartels do not snitch, and it’s true to a few ranges. However on the degree that El Chapo was once [on] again then, he was once ready to do it,” Hurowitz advised Insider.
Hurowitz mentioned Guzmán’s try to reduce a deal additionally gives a window into how government pull off main busts or deliver down high-profile goals.
“In Mexico, there was once an extended custom of traffickers operating with US regulation enforcers to eliminate different enemies, extra regularly than the police officers need to admit,” he mentioned.