Drug Queen of the Pacific, Sentenced to Prison in the U.S.

By Dialogo
July 29, 2013

Mexican drug trafficker Sandra Ávila Beltrán, known as the “Queen of the Pacific”, was sentenced on July 25 to 70 months in prison by Miami’s Federal Court, for advising another drug lord.

Federal Judge Michael Moore sentenced Ávila Beltrán to 70 months of in prison – five years and eight months – but the judge took into consideration time she already served, including almost five years in Mexico, plus 11 months that the defendant spent in a Florida prison, after her extradition from her country in 2012.

Ávila Beltrán, age 52, a prominent figure in the Sinaloa Cartel, reached a plea deal with the prosecution, resulting in her being charged with one crime: advising a drug trafficker to avoid justice, in reference to her former sentimental partner, Colombian trafficker Juan Diego Espinosa, aka “El Tigre”, a key player between Sinaloa and Norte del Valle cartels in Colombia.

Wearing a beige inmate uniform and shackles on her feet, the “Queen” smiled upon hearing the sentence that will leave her in the custody of U.S. Immigration Services for the next few days, so she can be deported to Mexico later on.

“We expect this process to take a month, more or less,” stated her defense attorney, who works in Arizona (southwestern U.S.).

Ávila Beltrán was accused of conspiracy to import up to five kilograms of cocaine to the United States between 1999 and 2004 by U.S. authorities, as well as cocaine distribution charges during the same period.

She pleaded guilty to these charges in order to reach an agreement with the prosecution, which at first considered more serious accusations.