SAN DIEGO — A pregnant woman who said she was the daughter of Sinaloa drug cartel boss Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán has pleaded guilty to trying to enter the United States with a bogus visa and was immediately ordered returned to Mexico.
Alejandrina Giselle Guzmán Salazar pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Cathy Ann Bencivengo on Monday. The hearing was held three days ahead of a previously scheduled hearing for Salazar, who was arrested at the San Ysidro Port of Entry on Oct. 12.
She admitted in her plea agreement that she tried to use a visa that belonged to another person to get into the U.S. Under the terms of a plea agreement, she was sentenced to time already served since her arrest in October, and agreed to be immediately returned to Mexico and not challenge the order.
In return for her guilty plea, other charges of lying to a federal officer and identity theft were dropped.
When she was arrested, she reportedly told U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers that she was the daughter of the feared drug cartel leader.
At the time, she was seven months pregnant and was reportedly trying to get to Los Angeles to give birth to her child.
Guadalupe Valencia, one of her lawyers, said Wednesday that she has not yet given birth.
"She's eight months pregnant and still has some time to go," Valencia said. "Her child will not be born here."
The U.S Attorney's Office in San Diego has not confirmed that Alejandrina Guzmán Salazar is the daughter of Chapo Guzmán, and there is no mention of it in the 14-page plea agreement she signed.
A spokeswoman for U.S. Attorney Laura Duffy declined to confirm or deny if she was the daughter of the drug lord, one of the most wanted criminals in the world.
Valencia said that the case did not get any special treatment or handling from the government. Pleading guilty and agreeing to immediate administrative deportation is common for scores of immigration cases that go through the federal courts here.
The Sinaloa cartel controls much of the drug smuggling along the U.S.-Mexico border from its home base in the state of Sinaloa, and it is often described as the world’s most powerful drug-trafficking group.
Chapo Guzmán has made the Forbes magazine list of most powerful people since 2009, and ranked number 1,153 on its list of billionaires.