Building A Better Prosecutor By Watching “El Senor De Los Cielos”

Follow me here as I learn how to be a better prosecutor from Maria Conchita Alonso’s character, New York prosecutor Nora Requena, in the NarcoNovela “El Senor de los Cielos!”

It’s only been three nights of Continuing Legal Education From Prosecutor Nora Requena in the Telemundo NarcoNovela “El Senor de Los Cielos,” and already I have learned more than I learned in three years of law school!

I am closely following her character to learn how to be a better prosecutor. If this works, I may have invented a better way to get Continuing Legal Education credit!

Nora (Maria Conchita Alonso) is in Mexico because she just pulled the plug on her husband, literally, and also at the request of theDEA Mexico City Chief, the always angry and impatient, 3-piece-suit wearing, vest-loving Joe Lazaro, played by Guy Ecker. (When Guy played the police chief in the old t.v. show “Las Vegas,” which was a Very Guilty Pleasure, he wore more open-collared shirts and was much more relaxed. But in #ESDLC he is angry all of the time, which might have something to do with wearing a collar and tie all of the time. Who wouldn’t be cranky?)

So when we meet up with Nora in her third episode, she is right where we left her – making everyone in the meeting nervous.

The DEA (minus Corina, who was busy stirring it up at Aurelio’s house), and Aurelio’s latest conquest Carla the Crusading Journalist, were all there to convince Nora to extradite Aurelio to the USA, although it was clear that Carla was having second thoughts because she needed a date for a wedding that was coming up.

Their strategy was to show Nora the video taken the day that Aurelio took over the news station and announced that even though he was the world’s biggest cartel boss, he was still better than the crooked bosses of Mexico.

Nora, played by Maria Conchita Alonso, is really one cool customer.

After watching the tape where Aurelio admitted all of his crimes to the audience (and it was not even Sweeps week), Nora announced that the tape was not evidence of anything.

Nora’s statement, and her rejection of charges, rocked my world.

I have always thought that a confession is pretty important evidence.

But Nora disagrees and I think she called it “television gossip” as though Aurelio’s broadcast was a bad episode of “The Batchelor.”

I’ll be honest.

Until I heard Nora’s remarkable assessment, if I was trying this case, I would charges him, hit “Play,” on the DVD player, lit a cigarette, and when the tape was over I would have announced “State Rests.”

But no, not according to Nora.

Even with a confession made to the entire country of Mexico which no one could ever complain was coerced because it was Aurelio himself who took over the whole tv station at gunpoint just so he could make this statement, there is no resting, and the work is just beginning, according to Nora.

The DEA was disappointed, but perked up when Nora tried to get everyone to go out drinking, which shows that the DEA in Mexico City is like every other prosecutor’s office around the USA.

Only Guy agreed to go, even though Nora appeared to be buying.

As they were leaving, Corina showed up.

I thought Nora would see through Corina with what I am sure are x-ray specs, and that she and Corina would be natural enemies, like the Snake and the Nongoose.

But Nora was so unexpectedly kind and charming to Corina that Corina (channeling her inner Sally Field) actually said to Deputy Chief Colon, ”See, she likes me! She really likes me!”

This has clearly never happened to Corina before.

After Nora left the offices of the DEA, Deputy Chief Colon told Corina he is worried and thinks that Nora is there to investigate them.

But Corina does not care because she has a new friend in Nora.

Wait until her new BFF Nora meets Corina’s boyfriend Aurelio and her old BFF El Rojito.

So what lesson did we learn from Nora last night?

What decisions did Nora make that will help us to be better prosecutors?

Well, that a “confession is not evidence, apparently.

Her views of confessions as gossip is interesting, but the real lesson, if you ask me,

is that as prosecutors we should strive to

create a mood of so much confusion and craziness that half of the room thinks you’re investigating them,

and the other half wants to go out drinking with you.

And of course our Nora was taking a page right out of Don Corleone’s book with her approach to Corina – “Keep your friends close, but your enemies closer.

Don’t miss these valuable legal lessons from Prosecutor Nora Requena, tonight and every night in “El Senor de Los Cielos” on Telemundo!

DAY 2: LEARNING HOW TO BE A BETTER PROSECUTOR WITH “EL SENOR DE LOS CIELOS!”

I am following the Adventures of New York prosecutor “Nora Requena,” played by Maria Conchita Alonso in the SuperNarcoNovela “El Senor de Los Cielos,” to learn how to be a better prosecutor! And I’ll be telling you all about it here!

And I am working hard to get us Continuing Legal Education credit for watching the show!

One thing I have learned from telenovelas of any type is that if there is a prosecutor hanging around, that prosecutor leads a pretty glamorous life: They have a driver; they can boss the judge around, and they usually have an office filled with antiques, Renaissance paintings and shrines to La Virgincita, something you don’t normally see in government work.

Since this is only the prosecutor La Fiscal Nora Requena’s second day on “El Senor de Los Cielos,” plus she is from NYC and only visiting Mexico, we have not seen her office yet.

However, there is no shortage of glamour for this VIP***. (*** – Very Important Prosecutor).

When we first saw Nora in yesterday’s episode, she was striding off of a private jet that had just landed in Mexico City, where she was met by the dashing and angry Joe Lazaro, the DEA chief in Mexico City who has somehow managed to figure out a way to yell at people through a clenched jaw.

When Nora tells Joe that her husband of twenty years has just died (leaving out the part about pulling the plug and leaving his corpse to science. Or whoever at the hospital wants it), Joe tells her he is sorry, and Nora responds, “I’m not.” Which Joe does not find odd at all, maybe because he’s already thinking about making a move on Nora since she’s already been in Mexico for approximately 7 seconds, and Corina needs a stepmother who can keep her in line.

Nora then climbs in the heavily-armed SUV with heavier-tinted windows, and she is whisked away to the DEA office in CDMX.

OK, as prosecutors, let’s unpack this scene.

First of all, when prosecutors travel for work we ride in whatever is lower than Economy Class, known as Sub-Economy Class, which usually involves standing for the entire flight.

Second of all, we never get to go to foreign countries, but instead we attend out-of state conferences in places like Arizona in the summer and Albany in the winter.

No one ever meets us at the plane. Instead, we stumble off with our too-heavy carry-ons. bleary, dreary, sleep-deprived, in desperate need of food, drink and a bathroom. Or put it another way, we disembark looking just like every other airline passenger.

There is no private car with tinted glass waiting for us at the airport. Here’s what usually happens instead: Some people try to get the whole group to go with public transportation or a shuttle service. A few jet-lagged people go with them, and the rest share cabs, during which period at least two people will claim they haven’t “exchanged their dollars” yet, so could someone else pay for them (ignoring the fact we are still in the USA and still using US currency; and one or two more people will announce they don’t have any change, so could someone else pay for them, with vows (always broken) of repayment.

Then when everyone is reunited at the hotel, someone somewhat cheap will introduce the idea of “The Kitty.” This is a shared fund for food, drinks and transportation into which everyone will contribute equally but some will deplete much faster than others, but then everyone has to “refresh” The Kitty by repeatedly putting more money into it.

At this point, the only thing a prosecutor’s trip for work has in common with #ESDLC is the potential for violence created by the resentment which is fueled by The Kitty.

Back to Nora The Telenovela Prosecutor…

After the luxurious SUV with the tinted windows whisks Nora away from the private plane, we don’t see her for awhile. Then, we meet her again in the very fancy and sleek offices of the DEA, where she is in a gigantic conference room with equipment right out of the movie “Minority Report” lining the walls.

Let the glaring and sideways glances begin:

Here’s who is in the meeting with  Nora: Joe Navarro – Chief of the DEA in Mexico, his Vice-President of the DEA Guillermo Colon, Bernardo Castillo-Chief of Security in Mexico, and Carla Uzcategui, the anti-cartel reporter who is now dating Aurelio Casillas (although she claims they are not dates, they are just kidnappings.)

As Navarro went around the table room introducing them, for each person in the room, when Joe announced their job title, the expression on Nora’s face was “I’ll be the judge of that,” which not only made me doubt whether I had understood correctly who these cast members were supposed to be, but it was clear even the cast members doubted themselves for a moment when they saw her skeptical response. Maybe Castillo really ISN’T the Chief of Security for the whole country of Mexico, after all?

Of course, Nora and Carla instantly hated each other on sight, as only two women who want to be the most popular woman in the room can hate each other. And somehow, I think Nora already knows that Carla hooked up with Aurelio the night before, where she literally and figuratively let her hair down.

Now that Nora has shaken everyone’s confidence in their own job titles, clearly her work is done for the day. Let’s see what havoc she wreaks tonight!!

And here is what I learned from Nora last night:

Striding anywhere with confidence gets you a much better chance of getting a driver, and treating anything your colleagues tell you with skepticism, even its it’s just their name, goes a long way to making you the most popular person in the room, as everyone works hard to get on your good side.

Don’t miss tomorrow’s session!

How I Am Learning To Be A Better Prosecutor From Maria Conchita Alonso In “El Senor De Los Cielos: Day 1

I’m no “Julie & Julia,” or Julie OR Julia, but I am a prosecutor in the criminal courts, and I am closely watching a prosecutor in the telenovela “El Senor de Los Cielos.”

That prosecutor is “Nora Requena” played by Maria Conchita Alonso, and she just joined the cast on Monday night.

If you don’t watch telenovelas (Why not??? Better check your pulse!!), you might think a prosecutor is a fairly straightforward character.

You’d be wrong:

In a series where the Venezuelan Ambassador to Mexico spends more time money laundering than serving tea to guests and reading telex’s, and where the Presidente Of México has more orgies in office than Caligula, a prosecutor has many more interesting things to do in the show than prepare Answers to Discovery.

I think I’ll learn a lot from “Nora” and what I’m going to try to do is tell you what I have learned every day, in every episode!

_______________________________

Day 1:

There’s nothing better than a good criminal prosecutor in a telenovela, and if we are lucky, the prosecutor is good because the prosecutor is BAD. As in Very Bad. And the Worse they are, the more fun they are!

Last night the legendary Maria Conchita Alonso debuted as Nora Requena in “El Senor de los Cielos.” In the series, Nora is a New York city prosecutor determined to bring Aurelio to justice. And bring him to New York City, where Nora will take a bite out of crime, and Aurelio will take a bite out of the Big Apple. Will he see justice? That’s anyone’s guess. Will he see the inside of Nora’s apartment? Always a possibility since Nora may be completely unprepared for the power of The Kevorka, a quality Aurelio shares with Kramer from “Seinfeld.”

We were introduced to Nora last night.

Since I am a prosecutor just like Nora, I wanted to see how much I could learn from this character, and believe me, in just a few minutes, I learned a lot and will be doing everything differently from now on.

When we meet Nora she is in a hospital room, at the bedside of a man on a ventilator.

Nora is hiding behind a fan, which she dramatically closes when the doctor and nurse enter the room. Honestly, it never occurred to me to use a fan before, but now I don’t know how I lived for so long without one. A fan is something I could use very effectively in closing arguments, as long as no one ever bursts into the song “Lady of Spain.” And when I say “no one,” I mean me. Or any of the arias from “Carmen.” Or I don’t develop a southern-accented Scarlett O Hara voice and claim to have “The Vapors.”

Now that I think about it, I could do a lot of damage with a fan, and all of it would be self-inflicted.

So back to the show … Within a minute of the doctor and nurse coming into the room of the man on the ventilator and Nora coming out from playing peek-a-boo behind her fan, Nora directs the nurse to take the man off of the ventilator.

And just like that, the nurse shuts off the ventilator and the man stops breathing. No one even asks Nora for identification. The nurse hit the button and that was that.

Nora did find time to take a call from the head of the DEA, Joe Navarro. Like Nora, I always have time to speak with law enforcement officers.

Unlike Nora, I don’t usually take those calls in the middle of pulling someone off of life support. So given that, Nora seems to be a more selfless prosecutor than I am.

We didn’t see Nora for a while after that. I thought maybe it was because she had a lot of paperwork to complete since she ordered the man’s death, but that wasn’t it at all. When we saw Nora again we were still in the hospital room: The Man took his final breath, Nora announced that her husband had been a complete stranger to her, gave his wedding ring to the nurse, and announced to the doctor and nurse that she was finally free. The doctor hoped that Nora meant “Finally Free to pay the hospital bill,” but that’s unlikely.

After this short but powerful speech, Nora left the hospital, her dead husband, and the very confused doctor and nurse who were now stuck with the wedding erring and the body that went with it.

So what I learned from Nora in this episode is that you can get away with anything if you are beautiful, dramatic, confusing, and best of all, using a fan.

Let’s see what she gets up to tonight.

One thing I can tell you that Nora is not doing any legal research.

The Real Not-Housewives Of “El Senor De Los Cielos!”

I’m learning a lot more than Spanish learning Spanish from telenovelas!

Things are getting very complicated in the Telemundo NarcoNovela “El Senor de Los Cielos,” these days, as Aurelio is trying to keep two very beautiful but surly women happy, keep them in love with him, and keep them in the drug business with him:

1: La Coronela Ambar Maldonado of the Venezuelan Army, who gives out solid gold bars of solid gold with the same frequency Fredo Corleone used to bang Las Vegas cocktail waitresses in “The Godfather:” Two at a time.

I’m not sure what this is doing for Venezuela, but her love life has improved dramatically.

She uses sex as a weapon, and she also uses weapons as weapons.

2. Corina, of the DEA:

She might be the real daughter of the head of the DEA, she might be the pretend niece of the second in charge, and she might be another Love of Aurelio’s Life, but she is the most unpleasant and angry woman this show has seen yet. All she does is make speeches and yell at people at work all day.

I am curious to see if she gets away with so much yelling now that she’s at the heart of the Cartel, where no one has to pretend to follow the law, and they all carry guns too.

Like the scene in “Goodfellas” where they kill the whiny Maury, someone will finally blow Corina’s head off and say “I thought she’d never shut up.”

Corina is only ever a little happy when she’s at the heart of Cartel business with Aurelio, which might account for why she is so unhappy at doing anti-Cartel work with the DEA, pretending (not very well) to be against drugs.

When Aurelio found out Corina was a double-agent, he locked her up in his basement jail, which is as common as a swimming pool in the living room in Narco Novelas.

Now she is allowed out on work-release and it appears Dona Alba (Aurelio’s mother) is her Pre-Trial Services Officer.

I wonder if Dona Alba ever wonders how Corina moved from a Prisoner of War to a Prisoner of Love, and how many more future daughters-in-law will she have to meet and throw wedding showers for.

Meanwhile, La Coronela is battling in a second war:

She is also fighting with “La Doctora,” who is the head of the Venezuelan Embassy in Mexico and is very busy selling off the parts of Venezuela that La Coronela hasn’t already promised to Cuba.

They are fighting (I think) for the Cuban President, Presidente El Commandante. Ambar is wooing him with more gold from Venezuela, and La Doctora (aka “Lady In Red” is wooing him by letting him hang out in the Venezuelan Embassy, wearing only red, and giving him lots of coffee and very comfortable chairs to sit around in.

My money is on La Doctora because even though Ambar is a Coronela, she is already using a lot of resources to fight with Corina for Aurelio, and everyone knows you can’t fight a war on two fronts!

We are also very excited about the upcoming appearance of Maria Conchita Alonso as a New York City Prosecutor who is about to extradite Aurelio.

And I hope it’s not just because she needs a date to a wedding.

This is a fantastic series! With tough, smart, scary, and of course beautiful women!

Why watch something that’s “like” a telenovela when you can watch The Real Thing???

If you haven’t watched it before, check your pulse.

Season 6 is currently on Telemundo, and you can catch up from Season 1 on Netflix!