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Human Smuggling Ringleader Gets 6 Years Jail

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A row of jail cells sit empty. (credit: AP Photo)

A row of jail cells sit empty. (credit: AP Photo)

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EL PASO (AP) - A co-leader of a Dallas-based human smuggling ring has been sentenced to six years in prison for helping slip immigrants through West Texas.

A federal judge in El Paso also ordered 45-year-old Mexican national Refugio Aide Diaz Martinez to pay a $12,500 fine.

Her husband and co-ringleader, 46-year-old Robert “Beto” Perez Jr., was sentenced in February to eight years in prison and fined $15,000. Both pleaded guilty to conspiracy to smuggle undocumented immigrants for financial gain.

A 63-year-old trucker linked to the smuggling ring was sentenced Wednesday to four months in prison and fined $2,000. Rogelio Munoz Chavarria pleaded guilty to the same count.

Investigators believe the human smuggling ring operated since 2008 and transported more than 150 people through the El Paso and Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, corridor.

(© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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