Actress Kate del Castillo under investigation for El Chapo interview
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Actress Kate del Castillo under investigation for El Chapo interview

Mexican actress Kate del Castillo is the latest celebrity to be under investigation following her links to druglord Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzmán.

Business agreements between the two are under investigation by the U.S. Treasury Department and the Attorney General’s Office, Mexico’s El Universal reports.

Actress Kate del Castillo rose to fame after appearing on several soap operas and movies. Together with Oscar winning actor Sean Penn, the actress was set to produce the kingpin’s planned autobiography.

The inquiry is still open. One aspect of the investigation is to determine whether the private flights made by del Castillo to Mexico were paid for by Guzmán or one of his partners, either through transfers to the actress’s bank accounts or to those of the other passengers that accompanied her during her meeting with the leader of the Sinaloa Cartel.

To finalize the business plan for El Chapo’s proposed movie project, the protagonist popular Mexican soap opera ‘La Reina del Sur’ held a meeting with lawyer Andrés Granados Flores, on October 27, 2015.

Earlier, on October 2, she travelled to the state of Sinaloa for a personal appointment with Guzmán, accompanied by actor Sean Penn and two Hollywood producers.

Breaking the silence

After days of silence, actress Kate Del Castillo sent out a short message via Twitter on Wednesday about her meeting with El Chapo Guzman.  She has promised to tell her side of the story soon.

“I will take my tequila to share with you, because it is a dream that I want to become real,” wrote Del Castillo a few weeks before meeting with the kingpin, according to one of the messages intercepted by the authorities and published by Milenio on Wednesday.

There were many other personal messages intercepted by police between the two.

Two federal sources confirmed the authenticity of the published conversations that helped the authorities to recapture the drug lord last Friday in the city of Los Mochis (in Mexico’s Sinaloa state).

The Law

The police report indicates that the agreements between del Castillo and Guzmán could constitute a violation of the Act of Designation of Foreign Traffickers in the United States, which prohibits U.S. persons from conducting any business with criminal leaders included in lists compiled by the Office for Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).

The actress received U.S. citizenship on September 28, 2015, just four days before she would travel from California to Mexico to meet El Chapo.

“Considering that the aforementioned actors are nationals of the United States and met with a drug dealer, designated as such on June 1, 2001, to negotiate a project to record a movie without informing the authorities, their behaviour falls in the course of supporting the drug lord for not revealing their location, and even to try to do business with him, which is a violation of the ban on transactions with him,” the document states.

The penalty could also be applied to movie producer, Fernando Sulichin and José Ibáñez-Martín Pira, equivalent to a sentence of 10 years imprisonment and a fine, according to section seven of the Foreign Dealers Designation Act in the U.S.

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