A former close personal aide to Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman testified Tuesday that the drug kingpin once paid a $100 million bribe to former Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto.
The stunning testimony came from Alex Cifuentes, a Colombian trafficker who once served as Guzman’s secretary and close personal aide.
Under cross examination by defense lawyer Lichtman, who referred to transcripts of de-briefings Cifuentes had with US authorities, Cifuentes alleged that a $100 million bribe was paid to Peña Nieto, who was President from 2012 to 2018.
During opening statements in November, Lichtman claimed that Peña Nieto and former Presidents of Mexico “received hundreds of millions of dollars in bribes from his organization.”
Cifuentes told authorities the money was given to Peña Nieto in October 2012, when he was president-elect.
“Yes, that very thing is what Joaquin told me,” Cifuentes responded, adding that a bribe would ensure the kingpin could “continue working.”
Guzman, 61, has pleaded not guilty. If convicted of international drug trafficking, conspiring to murder rivals, gun charges and money laundering, he faces a sentence of life in prison.
One testified that the Sinaloa cartel paid $10 million, twice, to a top commander in the Mexican Federal Police. Another said Mexico's former federal security chief got a $6 million payoff while a general got $100,000. Witnesses testified about Guzman getting a police escort after a prison escape and politicians who asked for help shipping 100 tons of cocaine in an oil tanker. In the most sensational claim, one of Guzman'..