‘El Chapo’ Guzman: Woman Associate With Three Maids And Guards In Prison Describes Life As A Fugitive

Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman had for a long time been the most feared drug lord in Mexico. But following his recapture earlier this year, his drug trafficking legacy has slowly been crumbling down as rival drug cartels try to push his organization out of strategic areas. Most recently, one of his sons, Jesus Alfredo Guzman was kidnapped while dining at a restaurant in Puerto Vallarta. He and several other men were held at gunpoint by hitmen alleged to be from The Jalisco New Generation cartel, a rival drug trafficking network.

U.S. Border Patrol agent leading captured undocumented immigrants. [Photo by John Moore/Getty Images]
Currently in his 60s and imprisoned awaiting extradition to the United States, El Chapo has been notorious for beating the Mexican prison system, having escaped from jail on two separate occasions. Just last year, he was able to escape from Altiplano maximum security prison via a 1.5 kilometer tunnel.

He is said to have received preferential treatment while in the facility, and was supposedly granted more than four dozen conjugal visits in the year and a half that he was there. Moreover, he received almost daily visits from family and attorneys. El Chapo was apparently also exempted from strip searches. The visits by people close to him are said to have made it possible for him to maintain control of his cartel – the Sinaloa Cartel – while behind bars.

However, his “preferential treatment” cannot rival that enjoyed by Sandra Avila Beltran, who at one time oversaw the transportation of 10-ton cocaine shipments from the coast of Mexico to the United States. An associate of El Chapo Guzman, she was arrested in 2007 and for the next decade in jail lived in lavish opulence. She even had her own guards and three maids. Her guests were also served alcohol and cigarettes, which are considered to be contraband items in Mexican prisons.

This is according to a report by The Guardian. Currently aged 55, she has lost two husbands and a brother to violence related to the drug trafficking feuds. Her first husband was allegedly killed by gunfire, her second by a stab to the heart, and her brother through torture. In the interview with The Guardian, she described her life on the run and the night one of her partners named Joel was killed.

This was after her character was sensationalized in a hit song by the music band Los Tucanes de Tijuana titled “Fiesta En La Sierra,” which translates to “Party in the Mountains” in English. The song exposed her as a powerful narco trafficker and soon both rival cartels and police were on her heels. The following was her revelation of events leading to his death.

“Her prized anonymity was shattered [after the exposure], and her bad luck continued. Months later, she and her partner Joel were ambushed on the way to breakfast. Two gunmen boxed in their car and descended with a fusillade of gunfire. Avila threw herself to the floor and, staring up at the sky, imagined it was her last seconds on Earth… She took a gamble.”

She supposedly ran out of the car, onto the sidewalk, and into an apartment building where she hid. According to her narration, she could see the gunmen searching for her. One, who was almost getting to her, abandoned the endeavor after hearing the wail of police sirens.

One of the witnesses allegedly took her in and gave her a change of clothes, plus 50 pesos, which she used to hire a taxi and escape. Sandra Avila is said to have lived a life on the run for about three years before she was captured, but when it happened, she explained that she felt relief as it was unbearable.

An illegal Mexican immigrant being questioned by U.S. Border Patrol. [Photo by John Moore/Getty Images]
Asked if she was surprised about El Chapo’s prison escape last year, she stated that she wasn’t, as in Mexico, money can buy anything, including freedom. Her view was that El Chapo had most likely bribed a high ranking member in the government – probably someone in the cabinet – as the whole federal prison system would be too hard to manipulate in this way.

[Photo by John Moore/Getty Images]

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