On March 29, 2020, almost three years ago, President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador was in the eye of the storm of public opinion. The reason was that during the supervision of the construction of the Badiraguato-Guadalupe highway in Sinaloa, he had a brief encounter with María Consuelo Loera.
Unsurprisingly, Tabasco has a close relationship with the people during his tours. However, the reason for the controversy was that this elderly lady was the mother of drug trafficker Joaquín Guzmán Loera, alias “El Chapo,” who is currently incarcerated in prison in the United States.
It was all thanks to a video that began to circulate on social networks where it can be seen how the federal president approaches a van and talks to the mother of the Mexican drug lord. “Nothing more than greeting you, don’t get out; I already received your letter,” the Chief Executive says.
The woman was accompanied by the lawyer Jose Luis Gonzalez Meza, who hugged the president and talked briefly, but the last conversation was unknown. The President confirmed the morning conference meeting the following day: “Yes, I greeted her, and the conservatives made a scandal,” he said three years ago.
The reason for the meeting
This is not the first time López Obrador has spoken on the subject. The first was three years ago, and he recalled the situation in November of last year, where he assured that he had a clear conscience and stated that he would do it again since he has respect for the elderly.
This Tuesday, the president again recalled the greeting, which has been a fierce criticism of the opponents of his government. In his morning conference from the National Palace in the Treasury Room, he revealed his relationship with the mother of the former leader of the Sinaloa Cartel.
He pointed out that on that occasion, he was reviewing the progress of the works of this road, which today is about to finish its construction since it is one of the most marginalized areas of the state. “We are working with welfare programs so that people do not have to plant marijuana or poppy,” he added.
He said that he already knew about the presence of the Sinaloan woman since the personnel of the Presidency of the Republic had warned him of this situation. “I went off and saw her because she is an old lady. I greeted her, and she gave me a letter, saying, ‘It’s that they don’t allow my daughters to visit their brother in jail. I want to ask you to help us so they can see him,'” she said.
Tabasco said that when he checked the letter, he gave it to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs so that they could make the request to the U.S. authorities and the family members could meet. “That is the big link, the big scandal. It was a formality,” he noted.
“I have nothing to be ashamed of, I do not establish relations of complicity with anyone. That is why I resist, otherwise I would have been destroyed. You cannot participate in a process of transformation without moral authority,” he said.
The Loera family’s other request
Guzmán Loera sent a message to President López Obrador at the beginning of the year. He considers that his rights were violated when he was extradited to the United States to be tried for drug trafficking, money laundering, and the use of firearms.
In an interview with journalist Ciro Gómez Leyva, the drug lord’s lawyer, José Refugio Rodríguez, said that the drug lord asked him to request an interview with the president to express the terrible conditions in which he is being held in the maximum security prison of Florence, in Colorado.
He also said that he would deliver a letter with his request to the Mexican ambassador to the United States, Esteban Moctezuma. “In the years he has been imprisoned, he has not seen the sun,” said the jurist about the deplorable conditions in which his client is being held.
In this regard, Roberto Velasco Álvarez, head of the Foreign Ministry’s North American Unit, said in mid-January that “El Chapo’s” request to serve his sentence in a Mexican prison and not in the United States will be analyzed, in addition to reparations for the violations that were committed in his extradition process.
He pointed out that the case now depends on the Judicial Branch, which will verify that all legal guarantees established in the said process have been complied with. In addition, he confirmed that the Mexican Embassy in the United States received an email from Guzmán Loera’s defense with said request.