The wife of the infamous drug dealer known to the public as “El Chapo” has been sentenced to three years in prison on Tuesday, Nov. 30, after she pleaded guilty to drug trafficking and money laundering.

Emma Coronel Aispuro, the 32-year-old wife of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, has admitted to helping run the vast drug operation that the Sinaloa Cartel controlled, moving hundreds of kilograms of different drugs to the United States and helping launder the money that came in, The New York Times reported.

She was also instrumental in the 2015 prison escape of El Chapo, where she bought land close to the Altiplano prison he was in custody, and provided him with a GPS device so that his cartel could dig a tunnel that he can use to safely escape the prison, Law&Crime reported.

“Coronel knows and understands the Sinaloa Cartel is the most prolific cartel in Mexico,” an affidavit said about Aispuro’s influence in the cartel. “Coronel was aware of multi-ton cocaine shipments, multi-kilo heroin production, multi-ton marijuana shipments, and ton quantity methamphetamine shipments.”

In spite of her involvement with many of the operations of the cartel, she was only sentenced to 36 months in prison due to her remorse for her actions as well as the fact that federal authorities only consider her a “minimal participant” in the cartel’s operations.

“The defendant was not an organizer, leader, boss, or other type of manager,” federal prosecutor Anthony J. Nardozzi said. “Rather she was a cog in a very large wheel of a criminal organization.”

Her attorney, Jeffrey Lichtman, said that her safety is in question after many in her cartel believe that she cooperated with the United States government in prosecuting members of the Sinaloa Cartel, which continues to be a powerful organization in Mexico, according to the BBC.

“I'm not sure that she could ever go back home,” Lichtman said.

With the plea deal that she accepted, she also has to return illicit earnings from the cartel worth $1.5 million, as well as face four years of probation after she is released from prison. Her husband is currently spending life plus 30 years in a Colorado prison after his conviction in 2019.

Emma Coronel Aispuro, wife of Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, is surrounded by security and members of the press as she exits the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York, Feb. 12, 2019 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. Guzman was found guilty on all charges in a drug conspiracy trial and will face life in prison. Drew Angerer/Getty Images

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