Thursday, June 13, 2024

Actress with links to ‘El Chapo’ Guzmán suing Mexican officials for US $60 million

Actress Kate del Castillo is suing former Mexican officials for US $60 million for “moral and material damages” and implied that she would like to kick Oscar-winning actor Sean Penn in the balls.

Del Castillo, perhaps best known for arranging a secret meeting between Penn and former drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán in 2015, told a press conference in Mexico City yesterday that her treatment by the former “macho” federal government amounted to “political persecution” and was motivated by her gender.

Mexican authorities investigated del Castillo after she arranged the meeting between Penn and the former Sinaloa Cartel chief.

Penn wrote a 10,000-word account of the meeting for the magazine Rolling Stone that was published the day after Guzmán was captured in Los Mochis, Sinaloa, in January 2016.

Del Castillo is reportedly the favorite actress of El Chapo, who is currently on trial in New York.

Penn, left, and Guzmán at a meeting in 2015.
Penn, left, and Guzmán at a meeting in 2015.

She was never charged but del Castillo claims that her reputation was damaged by information leaked by prosecutors in the administration of former president Enrique Peña Nieto, including the possibility that she might be linked to drug trafficking and that she had a romantic relationship with Guzmán.

“The Mexican government chased me and attacked me for being critical of the government, or for interviewing the most wanted man in the world . . .” she said.

“If I had been a man, that would have been another story, we would not be here. It is a violation of my rights for being a woman and actress; it is sad that in this time we keep having to fight only because we are women.”

In January last year, the actress told the Associated Press: “It’s not been a good year. I couldn’t work because people didn’t want me, because they were afraid.”

Del Castillo explained that she arranged the meeting between Penn and Guzmán because she was considering making a documentary or film about the latter.

But she said yesterday that she now has no plans to work on such a project, adding that she is no longer in contact with Penn and believes that he betrayed her.

“Sean Penn apparently helped in the location and detention” of Guzmán, she said.

“I was not aware of that situation, and that it why I’ve always referred to it as a betrayal . . . I have not talked to him for a long time, but if I saw him face to face, I would kick him in his private parts.”

Del Castillo had not returned to Mexico for three years because of concerns about the past government’s investigation but explained that she was reassured by the December 1 change in government and decided to come home for Christmas.

“I hope that things go incredibly well for the administration headed by Andrés Manuel López Obrador,” she said.

The 46-year-old actress also said that she hadn’t been summoned to give evidence at Guzmán’s trial on trafficking and conspiracy charges and declared: “I have nothing to hide, I didn’t commit any crime.”

Source: Associated Press (en), The Telegraph (en), Animal Político (sp) 

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