Sinaloa drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman paid a $100 million bribe to former Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto in 2012, according to testimony given in a New York federal court on Tuesday.
The testimony was given by Colombian drug lord Alex Cifuentes Villa, who said that Peña Nieto first contacted Guzman “about the time he was elected president in late 2012, asking the drug lord for $250 million in exchange for calling off a nationwide manhunt for him,” The New York Times reported.
“Mr. Guzman paid a bribe of $100 million to President Peña Nieto?” Guzman attorney Jeffrey Lichtman asked Cifuentes during cross-examination.
“Yes,” Cifuentes answered.
Cifuentes claimed that Guzman responded to Nieto’s offer by making a $100 million counteroffer.
“The message was that Mr. Guzmán didn’t have to stay in hiding?” Lichtman asked.
“Yes,” Cifuentes responded, adding: “that very thing is what Joaquin said to me.”
Cifuentes admitted to multiple crimes in court, including being involved in a murder plot in Canada, buying explosives from drug traffickers, paying off a judge in Ecuador, and kidnapping an official. – READ MORE