Ninel Conde Sues Anabel Hernández Over Book Claiming Drug Cartel Links


Miami-based singer and Rebelde star Ninel Conde has not taken kindly to a outstanding investigative journalist’s e-book that Conde claims falsely frames her as a “mistress, prostitute, and a cash launderer” for a Mexican drug lord.

Conde sued creator Anabel Hernández and writer Penguin Random House for printing allegedly defamatory statements portraying Conde as a paid escort and launderer for the late kingpin Arturo Beltrán Leyva within the e-book Emma y Las Otras Señoras del Narco (Emma and Other Narco Women). Published in December 2021, the e-book consists of claims that Beltrán Leyva showered Conde with lavish presents, together with a Lamborghini, and that he as soon as received her as a “prize” in a raffle the place $300,000 was collected from varied cartel-leader contestants.

The criticism lists 29 allegedly libelous accounts of Conde’s life within the e-book that Conde claims has induced “a large lack of earnings, the precise quantity of which can very nicely be past measure.” (The lawsuit doesn’t present particular figures on Conde’s alleged misplaced earnings.) The paperback, at the moment priced at $13.69 on Amazon, grew to become considered one of Mexico’s best-selling books upon publication.

Penguin House has not responded to New Times‘ request for remark.

The Global Investigative Journalism Network considers Hernández “some of the outstanding investigative journalists in Mexico.” She has received a number of awards throughout her 30-year profession overlaying Mexico’s politics, navy, and drug commerce.

Hernández beforehand stated that Emma y Las Otras Señoras del Narco was an try to point out how ladies in relationships with drug kingpins are extra than simply “mafia dolls” within the machismo-driven world of the cartels. Her work on the e-book was sparked by interviews with Emma Coronel, spouse of Sinaloa Cartel chief Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán.

“This shouldn’t be a simplistic e-book of gossip. It is mostly a social critique on how all these circles of prison teams which are destroying Mexico really operate,” Hernández informed El País.

The finer factors of the work apparently didn’t resonate with Conde, who argues the e-book topics her to “hatred, mistrust, ridicule, contempt, and/or shame.” Her lawsuit lists three counts of defamation and one rely of intentional infliction of emotional misery.

A local of Toluca, Mexico, Conde says the e-book falsely paints her as a prostitute who accepted varied types of fee to spend time with, entertain, and dance for her cartel “masters,” at occasions relationship again greater than fifteen years. She claims the work was printed regardless of the creator’s information that Conde “vehemently denied the egregiously false, disparaging, and defamatory statements.”

Narco Women purports to element how well-known ladies, like Plaintiff Conde, allegedly ‘conform to the sexist guidelines of their masters and dance earlier than them – in personal, at events, or orgies,'” the criticism states, referencing a quote from the writer’s e-book synopsis. “They do it on the conscience of 1000’s of victims of those self same masters who they entertain in change for cash, jewellery, and properties.”

Other stars featured within the e-book embody actress Issabela Camil, recognized for roles in Jane the Virgin and Mexican telenovelas, and Galilea Montijo, host of Hoy (a Mexican morning present) and winner of Big Brother VIP’s first season. The e-book depends closely on authorized complaints, investigative paperwork, and witness accounts.

Chapter eight, named after Conde’s tune, “El Bombon Asesino” (“The Killer Bombshell”), explores the star’s alleged interactions with Arturo Beltrán Leyva, kingpin of the Beltrán Leyva Cartel and cousin of El Chapo, and her purported connection to Harold Mauricio “El Conejo” Poveda, an alleged cocaine provider to the Federation cartel and Beltrán Leyva’s household. Some cartel members supposedly nicknamed Conde “the duck” in reference to the form of her derriere.

According to the courtroom paperwork, the e-book asserts that Conde agreed to a two-hour date with Beltrán Leyva in change for $100,000. “The appointment passed off with none setback, however it lasted greater than 5 hours, for the reason that woman locked herself with Mr. Leyva in one of many bedrooms,” an nameless witness states within the e-book, in line with the lawsuit’s translation. A witness cited within the e-book claimed Beltrán Leyva as soon as dropped off a Lamborghini on the dwelling of Conde’s then-husband Juan Zepeda, who was instructed by a messenger to “go away the automobile or there could be issues.”

The e-book consists of nameless testimony asserting that Conde obtained “money sources” from one other cartel-linked determine to buy a Lincoln pickup truck, a Porsche Cayenne, and luxurious property in Lomas de Valle Escondido – an unique residential space south of Mexico City.

Beltrán Leyva was killed in December 2009 throughout a Mexican particular forces operation concentrating on him and his cartel members.

“[The book] impugns Plaintiff Conde’s fame by falsely stating as incontrovertible fact that she engaged in prison and morally repugnant actions, together with having intercourse with drug cartel members in change for luxurious presents and cash,” the lawsuit, filed January 25, states.

Hernández is understood for her deeply researched drug-trade exposés, together with the best-selling Los Señores del Narco, a 588-page historical past of Mexican drug cartels. After the publication of that e-book and her investigation into a gaggle of Mexican cops’ alleged unlawful actions, Hernández stated she obtained loss of life threats and wanted a 24-hour safety element with bodyguards.

The synopsis for Emma y Las Otras Señoras del Narco states that the work is a part of “Hernández’s lengthy journalistic journey inside the advanced world of organized crime in Mexico.” It “continues her relentless search to know the drug cartels’ elements…one by which dozens of individuals are exploited, disappeared, or killed each day, lots of them feminine.”

The lawsuit is difficult critical allegations of cash laundering-related exercise specified by the e-book, which refers to an anonymously sourced narrative claiming Conde obtained “$3.5 million {dollars} in money in varied deliveries within the car parking zone of a Santa Fe procuring middle” in Mexico. Allegedly, the cash was used to purchase a penthouse in Acapulco and an house in Nayarit, properties linked to a promissory word between Beltrán Leyva and Conde that grew to become the topic of a Mexican authorities investigation, in line with the e-book transcript within the courtroom paperwork.

Conde has appeared in additional than a dozen telenovelas, together with current roles in El Señor de los Cielos and En Tierras Salvajes. She was featured within the 2023 season of Secretos de las Indomables, a actuality present that adopted round well-known TV actresses.

She is represented by Miami attorneys Anthony Hevia and Courtney Salas, together with Albert Gonzalez from Tennessee. She had been threatening to take authorized motion in opposition to Hernández since December 2021, shortly earlier than her e-book was launched.


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