According to court testimony, El Chapo's pilot nearly killed him in a plane crash
You don’t have to be a great pilot to fly for the cartel, apparently.
One of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman’s former pilots recently testified against the drug kingpin, who is on trial in Brooklyn, New York. And the stories he told about his airborne adventures with the cartel, weren’t exactly confidence inspiring.
The first time Miguel “Gordo” Angel Martinez crash landed one of the cartel’s airplanes he was carrying 1,470 kilos of cocaine on board. His co-pilot, an alleged ex-US Navy pilot, turned to him mid-flight and said, “They didn’t fill the gas tanks right…”
Shortly thereafter, one of their engines failed and Martinez was forced to crash land the craft on El Chapo’s airstrip.
The plane was trashed, totally totaled. But the cocaine survived, Martinez says.
Which made El Chapo very happy, apparently. The magnificent crash-landing had the notorious cartel leader chanting, “gordo, gordo, gordo, gordo” as Martinez exited the wreckage. (“Gordo” in Sinaloan Cartel code means, “the package has been safely delivered”).
However, the second time he crashed one of El Chapo’s planes, the cartel leader was less-than enthused — to say the least. Specifically, because he was on it when it happened.
“When I went to land the plane, the propeller hit the ground,” Martinez recalled before the court. The plane crashed so hard that the three occupants within were lucky to have lived. El Chapo’s bodyguard was so infuriated by the accident that he threatened to kill Martinez on the spot.
But Guzman? He was calm as a cucumber. He kept his cool throughout the entire gut-wrenching ordeal.
He did have a few words for Martinez, though.
“Mr. Guzman told me I was a really bad pilot,” Martinez recalls. To which, the courtroom burst into laughter.
As Martinez told these stories to the court, he sat across from his old friend and boss, the self-proclaimed godfather to his son, the man of the hour, a cold and steely-eyed Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman.
Who, funny enough, didn’t seem to find Martinez’ testimony all that humorous.