Former Mexican Cartel Head and El Chapo Associate Gets Life for Drug Smuggling
WASHINGTON (AP) — A once-powerful Mexican drug cartel leader and associate of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman has been sentenced to life in a U.S. prison.
Alfredo Beltran Leyva, 46, was sentenced Wednesday after pleading guilty in February to charges his multibillion-dollar operation smuggled tons of cocaine and methamphetamine into the United States. Beltran Leyva led the organization from the 1990s to his indictment in 2014, as it shipped tons of cocaine from South America to the United States, prosecutors said.
Authorities called him a “Goliath” of drug trafficking. A judge ordered him to forfeit more than $529 million, based on what he described as a conservative estimate of the amount of cocaine Beltran Leyva brought into the United States.
Beltran Leyva led a “campaign of violence and fear that gripped communities across North America,” acting Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Blanco said.
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