Chicago, IL

El Chapo Saga Continues, Federal Authorities Recommend Stricter Sentence for Chicago 'Cartel Wife'

Natalie Frank, Ph.D.

Ongoing legal saga unfolds in shadow of Sinaloa Cartel

In the continuing El Chapo drama, federal authorities have voiced their position on the sentencing of one of Chicago's 'cartel wives.' They believe that Valerie Gaytan, former wife of convicted narcotics dealer Valentine Reveless, should receive a more severe sentence than originally given.

When first sentenced for handling drug money, Valerie Gaytan received five months in prison, seen as a slap on the wrist.

In that case that took place over twenty years ago, Gaytan was convicted of creating false transaction paperwork in order to avoid the bank reporting requirements. Her ex-husband Valentine Reveles was working at the time for the Juarez drug cartel. Prosecutors are arguing that there are aggravating factors that merit a stiffer sentence than the three and a half years Vivianna Lopez, her sister-in-law received for her part in the same operation.

In a subsequent case federal prosecutors are asking that Gaytan a five-year prison sentence for Gaytan for her participation in laundering at least $2.3 million in drug money related to her current husband Margarito Flores and his twin brother Pedro Flores, the Chicago Sinaloa cartel cocaine heavyweights who were pivotal in the conviction of boss Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán Loera.

Federal authorities argue that the actions and involvement of this 'cartel wife' merit a stiffer penalty due to the gravity of her role in the criminal organization. The 'cartel wives,' including Valerie Gaytan, have been entwined in a web of legal proceedings since the apprehension of Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán.

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