To herald the El Chapo interview coup, Rolling Stone published a two-minute video of his sit-down with Penn.
Penn explained his interest in the outlaw, saying in the article,
“I take no pride in keeping secrets that may be perceived as protecting criminals, nor do I have any gloating arrogance at posing for selfies with unknowing security men.
But I’m in my rhythm.
Everything I say to everyone must be true.“
“I took some comfort in a unique aspect of El Chapo’s reputation among the heads of drug cartels in Mexico: that, unlike many of his counterparts who engage in gratuitous kidnapping and murder, El Chapo is a businessman first, and only resorts to violence when he deems it advantageous to himself or his business interests,”
“As an American citizen, I’m drawn to explore what may be inconsistent with the portrayals our government and media brand upon their declared enemies.
Not since Osama bin Laden has the pursuit of a fugitive so occupied the public imagination.
But unlike bin Laden, who had posed the ludicrous premise that a country’s entire population is defined by and therefore complicit in its leadership’s policies, with the world’s most wanted drug lord, are we, the American public, not indeed complicit in what we demonize?
We are the consumers, and as such, we are complicit in every murder, and in every corruption of an institution’s ability to protect the quality of life for citizens of Mexico and the United States that comes as a result of our insatiable appetite for illicit narcotics.”
“I don’t want to be portrayed as a nun,”
El Chapo tells Penn as the two dined over tacos and tequila.
After traveling to the unknown location in SUVs, Penn said they were surrounded by “30 to 35” armed guards, with an additional hundred soldiers in a nearby field.
None of El Chapo’s soldiers or associates spoke in English, so the jungle meeting was translated by Castillo, whom the drug lord had been in contact with after she tweeted a plea to him to use his power to help people.
But the first contact was more of a meet and greet; the actor then spent several weeks trying to contact El Chapo via Castillo, and finally received a video answering the questions he had submitted.
In a radical departure from journalistic practice, the entire Rolling Stone story was submitted to El Chapo for approval, and Penn says the drug lord did not ask for any changes.
Though El Chapo formerly denied being a drug dealer, he told Penn that he wanted a feature film to tell his story, boasting,
“I supply more heroin, methamphetamine, cocaine and marijuana than anybody else in the world. I have a fleet of submarines, airplanes, trucks and boats.”
Chapo went on to admit that he once met drug kingpin Pablo Escobar:
“Yes, I met him once at his house. Big house.”
When asked about GOP candidate Donald Trump, he gave a sarcastic,
“I’ve got nothin’ to hide,”
Penn told The Associated Press after images published Monday indicated he was under surveillance when he met with the Mexican actress who led him to Guzman and the pair was apparently followed and photographed as they set out for the meeting with the drug lord at a hideout in rural Mexico in October.
The actor has become known in the region for befriending leftist leaders, including late Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and Evo Morales in Bolivia.
In 2008, he interviewed President Raul Castro for The Nation just after Barack Obama was elected U.S. president in what was billed as the Cuban leaders’ first interview with a foreign journalist.
He has also been widely hailed for the charity he founded in Haiti after its devastating 2010 earthquake.
Yesterday, actual footage of the raid and shootout to capture “El Chapo,” has leaked which shows an intense gun battle between the Mexican military and some of the druglords assailant.
Still, the weird details continue to emerge, and according toThe Guardian, Chapo was taken to a “sex motel” by authorities following his re-capture last week, while they awaited back-up. According to this Guardian report:
They promptly took them to a sex motel.
The police wanted a discreet refuge to await reinforcements so the world’s most notorious drug lord found himself handcuffed by a beige satin bedspread in room 51 of the Doux motel.
It is decorated in pink and purple hues and costs 300 pesos (£11.50) for six hours.
A laminated menu of sex toys, condoms and lubricants sits by the bedside, not visible in the photograph of the captured El Chapo.
“A laminated menu of sex toys, condoms and lubricants sits by the bedside.” Now, the room he was taken to is the establishment’s biggest draw.
Mexico has begun the process of extraditing Guzman to the U.S., where he faces drug-trafficking charges, but that could take “a year or longer” because of legal challenges, said the head of Mexico’s extradition office, Manuel Merino.
He cited one extradition case that took six years.