Meet the queens at the top of Mexico’s most ruthless drug cartels

The queens of the Mexican drug cartels are fond of tight denims, purple lipstick and stilettos. They’ve impressed songs and telenovelas. They go by nicknames like “The Little Queen” and “The Missus.” 

They’re additionally as brutal and ruthless as any of their male counterparts, succesful of launching all-out struggle in opposition to their enemies. 

“The cartels used to be a men’s-only game, and women were kept around for parties,” safety advisor Robert Almonte, an knowledgeable on Mexican cartels who trains legislation enforcement, informed The Post. 

Now, ladies have emerged as a robust power in a single of the world’s largest felony enterprises, working in all points of the cartels, together with as feminine “hitmen” or sicarios. 

“The cartels like to use pretty girls as hitmen to lure their victims,” Almonte mentioned. “And some of them are in important leadership positions.”

Here are 4 of the most high-ranking Cartel Queens. After two high-profile busts, these drug doyennes are being tried like their male counterparts — and probably turning in opposition to them … 

Emma Coronel Aispuro
Emma Coronel Aispuro
Getty Images

Emma Coronel Aispuro: Mrs. El Chapo 

On June 10, Emma Coronel Aispuro, a former magnificence queen, pleaded responsible in federal court docket in Washington, DC, to serving to Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzmán — her infamous trafficker husband — run his empire, the Sinaloa cartel. The 31-year-old additionally admitted to aiding Guzmán, now serving a life sentence in a Colorado jail, escape from a high-security jail in Mexico in 2015. 

The California native met her husband at a celebration thrown by her Mexican-born drug-trafficking father in 2006 when she was 17. A yr later, she was topped Miss Coffee and Guava in Canelas, a city in northwestern Mexico. 

The couple introduced their plans to marry in the run-up to the pageant, and plenty of have prompt that she gained the title as a result of of El Chapo’s affect. Since she appeared at her coronation in a diamond-encrusted crown, El Chapo dubbed her his “little queen.” El Chapo proposed to the magnificence queen at the contest, flanked by 100 of his hitmen. They had been married on her 18th birthday — July 3, 2007. El Chapo was 50 years previous at the time of the ceremony. 

Emma Coronel Aispuro as a teen beauty queen and her husband El Chapo
Emma Coronel Aispuro as a teen magnificence queen and her husband El Chapo
REUTERS

The nickname caught, and he or she has been often called “La Reinita” to her husband’s cartel cohort ever since. In 2011, she gave beginning to the couple’s twins — Maria and Emali. Three years later, El Chapo, by then one of the world’s largest drug lords, was arrested by Mexican authorities for working his drug empire. Coronel Aispuro helped her husband distribute cocaine and handed on messages to the cartel whereas he was imprisoned in Mexico, in response to the FBI. She was additionally a continuing presence at his trial in federal court docket in Brooklyn, which started in November 2018 and resulted in February 2019. 

Almonte believes that Coronel Aispuro possible gave up intelligence about the Sinaloa cartel in alternate for extra lenient remedy. “Likely, she will need to go into witness protection,” mentioned Almonte. She will possible serve a brief sentence if she spills details about the cartel, and if that occurs, her life will likely be at risk as soon as she is launched, he mentioned. 

Jessica Johanna Oseguera Gonzalez
Jessica Oseguera

Jessica Oseguera: ‘La Negra’ 

A day after Coronel Aispuro’s court docket look, Jessica Oseguera, the 34-year-old daughter of El Chapo’s rival cartel boss, Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes, was sentenced to 2 and a half years in jail. 

She was discovered responsible of serving to her dad launder cash by means of varied companies — sushi eating places, a resort and a tequila firm — in response to a Department of Justice press assertion. 

Oseguera's father, known as "El Mencho"
Oseguera’s father, often called “El Mencho”

Oseguera’s father, recognized by his underworld moniker “El Mencho,” heads up the Jalisco New Generation Cartel. One of Mexico’s most brutal drug trafficking rings, its members are recognized for beheading enemies and dissolving their our bodies in acid. El Mencho instructions a bunch of 5,000 hitmen and is on the Drug Enforcement Administration’s checklist of most needed traffickers. The reward for data resulting in his seize is $10 million. 

Oseguera, who has each Mexican and US citizenship, was arrested final yr when she drove throughout the border. 

According to Almonte, her “extremely lenient sentence” of two and a half years possible implies that she absolutely gave up details about her fugitive father, El Mencho. 

“La Negra,” as Oseguera is understood, has two younger kids and is alleged to be determined to be reunited with them. Although she had initially insisted she was not concerned in her father’s drug enterprise, she expressed regret in a letter to the decide. 

“I ask for forgiveness, and say, without hesitation, that I regret everything I did that may have caused any harm,” Oseguera wrote. “Today, more than ever, it is clear to me that I should have paid more attention to my actions and my actions’ consequences.”

Clara Elena Laborin
Clara Elena Laborín

Clara Elena Laborín: ‘La Señora’ 

In 2016, authorities arrested Clara Elena Laborín, a former magnificence queen from Sonora state who had married Héctor Beltrán Leyva, El Chapo’s former companion in the Sinaloa cartel. Laborín is called “La Señora” or “The Missus” as a result of her husband handled her like a trophy bride. 

In 2008, Beltrán Leyva broke with El Chapo and shaped his personal cartel after his brother and enterprise companion, Alfredo, was arrested by Mexican authorities. Beltrán Leyva suspected that El Chapo had snitched on his sibling to authorities, so he launched a bloody struggle in opposition to the Sinaloa cartel. 

Hector Beltran Leyva
Héctor Beltrán Leyva
ZUMAPRESS.com

Laborín was enlisted to direct the money-laundering element of her husband’s Beltrán Leyva Cartel. In 2010, she was kidnapped by a rival group and photographed in captivity, blindfolded and along with her toes and fingers sure, with automated rifles pointed at her. After 13 days, she was launched and returned to handle the cartel’s funds. 

Four years later, when her husband was arrested, Laborín turned the head of the cartel, launching one of the bloodiest waves of violence in Acapulco. Hers was a brutal marketing campaign for dominance that turned the resort metropolis into Mexico’s homicide capital. Tourists had been caught in the crossfire and compelled to step over bullet-riddled our bodies on seashores as the Beltrán Leyva Cartel fought their rivals in the Independent Cartel of Acapulco. 

Laborín mentioned she is not half of the cartel. 

“Women in the cartels have shown that they can be as brutal as some of the men,” Almonte mentioned.

Sandra Avila Beltran
Sandra Ávila Beltrán
AP

Sandra Ávila Beltrán: ‘Queen of the Pacific’ 

The most legendary of the drug empresses is Sandra Ávila Beltrán, who was so revered amongst cartels that she is called “Queen of the Pacific” and had a well-liked “narcocorrido” track written about her by the band Los Tigres del Norte in 2004. “The more beautiful the rose, the sharper the thorns,” goes one lyric. 

She can also be the inspiration for the Mexican telenovela “La Reina del Sur” (“Queen of the South”). Ávila Beltrán earned her moniker by commandeering a fleet of tuna boats — every loaded with 10 tons of cocaine — that sailed from the port of Manzanillo to California in 2001. Authorities seized some of the cargo, and Ávila Beltrán went underground. 

Now 60, Ávila Beltrán was an vital hyperlink between Mexican cartels and Colombian cocaine traffickers, largely as a result of of her romantic relationship with Colombian drug supplier Juan “The Tiger” Diego Espinoza. 

A 3rd-generation drug trafficker born in Baja California, Mexico, Ávila Beltrán is linked by household ties to highly effective kingpins together with the Guadalajara Cartel’s Rafael Caro Quintero and has had affairs with a number of capos. She additionally married two law-enforcement officers who joined the cartels. 

Her first husband was killed in a shootout, her second was stabbed by means of the coronary heart — each throughout the Mexican drug wars. 

Rafael Caro Quintero
Rafael Caro Quintero
FBI

Ávila Beltrán herself is a pointy shooter who, throughout her heyday, thought nothing of carrying suitcases full of tens of millions of {dollars} in $100 payments. 

In addition to her most well-liked tight denims and stilettos, the raven-haired Ávila Beltrán was recognized for sporting a gold pendant of King Tutankhamen, studded with 83 rubies, 228 diamonds and 189 sapphires. All the whereas, she repeatedly insisted that she was nothing greater than a rich homemaker in Guadalajara, making a residing by renting out properties and promoting garments. 

She got here onto police radar in 2002 after paying $5 million in ransom when her teenage son was kidnapped by rival drug traffickers. Police puzzled the place this humble homemaker obtained the money, and Ávila Beltrán — who owned greater than 200 properties in Guadalajara — was arrested 5 years later. She was charged with serving to her Colombian boyfriend promote medicine and launder cash by means of a string of tanning salons she owned referred to as Electric Beach. 

At her arrest in the fall of 2007, 30 Mexican federal brokers swarmed an upscale Mexico City diner the place she was sipping espresso. Before they led her away, she satisfied them to permit her to the touch up her make-up in order that she may look good in her mugshot. In the arrest video she will be seen flicking again her hair and smiling for the digital camera. 

Even after Ávila Beltrán pleaded responsible — ultimately admitting to US authorities that she helped her Colombian boyfriend promote medicine — she discovered the highlight laborious to withstand. As she informed the decide at one of her first hearings in Mexico: “It’s nice to be called a queen.” 

At the Santa Martha Acatitla Women’s Prison, she ordered Thai meals from an upscale restaurant in Mexico City and arranged Botox injections. When authorities cracked down on her take-out meals, Ávila Beltrán filed a grievance with the human rights fee. She misplaced her enchantment, and two high-ranking jail workers had been fired, in response to Mexican information experiences. 

After serving time in each Mexican and US prisons, she was launched in 2015, and at present lives “quietly” in Guadalajara.

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