23 | SEP | 2019
El Chapo gifted his employees luxury cars and Rolex watches
El Chapo Guzmán - Photo: Marco Ugarte/AP

El Chapo gifted his employees luxury cars and Rolex watches

23/12/2018
13:31
Víctor Sancho / Corresponsal
New York
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Every month, two or three planes with around USD $8 million to USD $10 million each arrived in Mexico City

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During the 90s, Joaquín Guzmán Loera was in “the best business in the world.” Miguel Ángel Martínez Martínez, who was his right-hand man during his first years in the business and managed all the operations during that time, said he “took part in the cocaine boom.”

Every month, two or three planes with around USD $8 million to USD $10 million each arrived in Mexico City, and El Chapo spent it on a lavish lifestyle.

During his testimony in a federal court in New York, Martínez, also known as “El Gordo” or “El Tololoche”, revealed the drug lord's lavish lifestyle.

“When I met him (in 1987) he didn't have a jet. In the 90s he had four,” explained the witness. His lifestyle change was thanks to the success of trafficking Colombian cocaine which made El Chapo a notorious drug lord.

According to El Gordo, El Chapo had houses in “every beach” and “ranches in every state.” For example, he has a house with several pools and tennis courts in Acapulco, which he bought for USD $10 million, where he also had a yacht called “Chapito.”

He had a zoo filled with lions, panthers, and deer in his Guadalajara ranch.

“We traveled all over the world,” explained the former cartel's pilot, for business, too look for more drug sources, especially Asian heroin, and for pleasure. Among the visited countries are Brazil, Argentina, Japan, all of Europe, and even Macao, a country famous for its betting houses.

His vanity even took El Chapo to Switzerland, “where they inject you with cells to keep you young.”

Nevertheless, he shared his wealth with his workers. El Chapo gifted El Gordo a diamond-encrusted Rolex, and one Christmas he gifted over 50 cars, each was around USD $30,000.

Besides gifts and his image, most of his money went to a personal cause: the war against the Arellano Félix brothers. He “spent a lot of money fighting the Tijuana cartel,” said El Gordo, a war that began after the murder of two of El Chapo's friends, “El Lobo” and “El Rayo”, and the family on one of his closest collaborators, Héctor “El Güero” Palma.

Miguel Ángel Martínez Martínez will keep testifying about his last moments in the cartel, beginning with recordings obtained by the U.S. authorities.
 

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