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For Americans, it is difficult to understand how drugs move south of the border as Mexico lies in the collective imagination as a destination of contrasts: a mix of vacationing, partying, and danger. This week, a fascinating story made headlines and may help us understand how the tentacles of organized crime have reached the most remote places of the Mexican entertainment industry.
Renowned Mexican journalist Anabel Hernández [pictured above] published her book Emma and the other ladies of the narco. Hernández delves into the story of Emma Coronel, the wife of the infamous drug trafficker “El Chapo Guzmám.” El Chapo is serving a life sentence in the United States.
Coronel’s story deserves to be read in detail. But what has really caught the attention of the press is that Anabel has mentioned how figures from the entertainment world allegedly had financial and romantic relationships with drug traffickers.
Hernández claims that Televisa and Univisión host Galilea Montijo had a relationship with Arturo Beltrán Leyva, the drug trafficker known as “El Barbas.” Similarly, she romantically links figures such as Ninel Conde, Alicia Machado and Arleth Therán, among others, with drug trafficking leaders. Actor and socialist politician Sergio Mayer along with wife Issabela Camil are cited as friends of “La Barbie.”
“Ninel Conde has accumulated a series of assets through what could be a possible triangulation of money with organized crime, she is linked to some cartel members, but she also has friendly ties with the former Secretary of the Interior Miguel Ángel Osorio Chong or with Senator Ricardo Monreal.”
The late singer Joan Sebastian and actor Andrés García also appear on the list of figures linked to the cartels.
The Mexican and Hispanic entertainment media in the U.S. (which is far from offering serious journalism à la Anabel Hernández) have downplayed and disregarded the work of the outstanding reporter.
I had the pleasure of meeting Anabel. I’ve followed her impeccable, integral work. Each person mentioned in the book can defend her name in court if they consider it appropriate, but of one thing I am sure: Hernández is not a journalist who speaks from gossip.
If the justice system fails, at least public opinion will know what was hidden for a long time. Nevertheless, journalism is the ultimate winner.