Pedro Flores, one of the most awaited witnesses in the trial in New York against Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzman, today revealed details of how he trafficked drugs in Chicago and other cities in the United States, in connection with the Sinaloa cartel, led by the Mexican capo.
Flores, who in the 2000s was the most important drug dealer for the Sinaloa cartel in Chicago with his twin brother, surrendered in 2008 and cooperated with the authorities, recording conversations with Guzmán and other members of the cartel.
The 37-year-old American, the son of a Mexican immigrant who helped unload drug shipments from the Sinaloa cartel and the Beltrán Leyva since he was about seven years old, recalled on his first day of testimony in the trial against Guzmán Loera, that At age 20 he and his twin brother, Margarito, joined the family business.
The drug was collected in various places and, initially through intermediaries, was distributed in Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, Minneapolis and Milwaukee and other American cities.
In 2004 the brothers escaped to Mexico after knowing that they were wanted by the authorities and a year later he met the drug trafficker “Mayo” Zambada and then Guzmán Loera.
The witness, who wore blue prison uniform as he served a sentence for drug trafficking, recalled that in his meeting with Zambada, who, according to Chapo’s defense, is the true head of the Sinaloa cartel, he praised the twins’ ability to to traffic drugs in the United States.
“Imagine if they were triplets,” he recalled today in his testimony in federal court for the eastern district of New York.
He also recalled his first encounter, of about three, with Guzmán Loera, in a ranch of the defendant in the mountains in Culiacán (Mexico), which was with his brother, where they were led by an armed man and in which they agreed that there would be no intermediaries for the distribution of coca in their region.
He remembered being very nervous and much more so when he saw a naked subject tied to a tree by the side of the road, and the place watched by about 40 men.
El Chapo, who wore jeans, T-shirt and baseball cap, joked with Flores, who was wearing shorts. “With all that money you have, you could not afford to buy the rest of your pants?” He reminded the boss.
The brothers began to work directly with both of them and between 2005 and 2008 they would have trafficked without intermediaries some 38 tons of cocaine and heroin that reached them through secret compartments in trains and trucks, of which they paid 800,000 dollars to their partners.
In 2008 he opted to surrender to the authorities in Chicago after his wife became pregnant because he wanted a better future for his son, outside of drug trafficking, and at a time when there was a war between Guzmán and Arturo Beltrán Leyva.
Pedro Flores, who will be released from prison in 2020, began cooperating with the authorities and recorded conversations with Guzmán and other members of the cartel, which he handed over to the authorities.
So far, the interrogations in this judicial process had explained how the drug was trafficked from Colombia to Mexico and from there it was sent to the US using vehicles, trains, and tunnels and with this new witness it will be heard how the business operated once the drug came to the US
Flores, who was accused along with Margarito of drug trafficking in a federal court in Chicago, faced life in prison but was sentenced to 14 years in prison for having cooperated with the authorities.