Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Cartel Wives: Women Whose Husbands Worked For, Then Brought Down El Chapo Tell Their Story

Pamela K. Browne and Cyd Upson and Foxnews.com offers a piece on a pair of Cartel wives whose drug trafficking husbands have become informants and will soon testify against their former boss, Joaguin “El Chapo” Guzman.   

They once enjoyed a life of ill-gotten luxury, married to identical twins who climbed to the top of the world’s most profitable – and deadly – drug cartel. But these days, Mia and Olivia Flores live in the shadows, wearing disguises and shuttling their children from home to home, always wary someone is coming for them.

Daughters of Chicago police officers, Mia and Olivia married Pedro and Margarito Flores Jr. as the brothers rose from street-level dealers to running Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzmán's Sinaloa drug cartel in the United States.

"They made a lot of money," Mia said in an exclusive, on-camera interview with Fox News Chief Intelligence Correspondent Catherine Herridge. "My husband and brother-in-law were a big asset to him. They knew the U.S. inside and out, they knew the roads, they knew how to maneuver in the U.S. And that's something Chapo and his team didn't know how to do."

The lavish lifestyle came crashing down in 2012, when the twins were each sentenced to 14 years in prison for smuggling 71 tons of cocaine and heroin and $2 billion in cash into the United States. The Flores brothers were the highest level American drug traffickers to be flipped by the Drug Enforcement Agency--DEA, and key to bringing El Chapo to U.S. justice. Key to the prosecution's case, they are expected to testify at his 2018 trial in New York City.

"I would say that they're probably the strongest witnesses in this case," Olivia said in the interview, at which she, like her sister-in-law, wore dark glasses and a wig. "They were the first to ever get El Chapo Guzmán on a recorded conversation. They're U.S. citizens. They speak English. They've trafficked drugs across the U.S."

In the meantime, Olivia and Mia are telling their own story in “CARTEL WIVES: A True Story of Deadly Decisions, Steadfast Love and Bringing Down El Chapo.” The book, which hits stores this week, is Mia and Olivia’s effort to detail the role their husbands played in bringing El Chapo to justice and to tell their own story of survival in the aftermath.

"We do not share our real names,” Olivia told Fox News. “We have to constantly hide. We have to constantly remember our lies. We don't mingle with neighbors. We try to just fly under the radar and try not to get noticed. We're soccer moms. We're on the PTA. We're in car line. We're dressed in sneakers every day. And we're just trying to give our children a normal life."

Although El Chapo, who was captured in his Mexican mountain hideout in January of 2016, after repeated escapes from prison, is now held at the maximum-security wing of the Metropolitan Correctional Center in New York, Olivia and Mia fear they are "being hunted" by his loyalists.

Their fear is real, according to recently retired Drug Enforcement Administration Deputy Administrator Jack Riley (seen in the above photo in front of a wanted poster of Guzman), who spent more than a decade hunting El Chapo. He said El Chapo is directly responsible for the deaths of tens of thousands of people.

"Look, I hate the guy,” Riley said. “When I was on the border some 10 years ago, sluggin' it out with what was going on in Juarez, he put a bounty on my head. I was a little upset about it, because it was only $100,000, but he put a bounty to have someone cut my head off.
You can read the rest of the piece via the below link:

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