Gulf cartel boss gets 11-plus years for bribery

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Associated Press

Posted on October 10, 2012 at 5:05 PM

Updated Wednesday, Oct 10 at 5:05 PM

BROWNSVILLE, Texas (AP) — A Gulf cartel boss who once threatened two U.S. agents in Mexico with his assault rifle has been sentenced to more than 11 years in prison for trying to bribe his way to safe release from an earlier prison term for that crime.

Juan Carlos De la Cruz Reyna and six accomplices pleaded guilty to bribing a public official. Prosecutors say the plan was to move De la Cruz from a federal prison in Atlanta to another in Texas. He also wanted to assure his release to cartel friends rather than Mexican authorities or cartel rivals.

Prosecutors say De la Cruz arranged for nearly $800,000 in bribes for a U.S. immigration official he thought was corrupt.

De la Cruz, who got 135 months, and five accomplices were sentenced Wednesday.

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