Louisiana man sentenced to prison in Arizona smuggling case

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PHOENIX (AP) – A Louisiana man has been sentenced to 14 ½ years in prison for operating an organization that smuggled immigrants not born in the U.S. into Arizona.

Federal prosecutors say 29-year-old Otoniel Galindo Vasquez-Lopez, of Bossier, previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to transport and harbor immigrants not born in the U.S. and conspiracy to commit money laundering.

They say he employed and directed money launderers and smugglers in Arizona and coordinated transportation and payment with hundreds of immigrants and their families from Louisiana.

Prosecutors say two people transported by Vasquez-Lopez’s smugglers were killed in a rollover accident in July 2012 in Holbrook, Arizona.

They say Vasquez-Lopez’s name and telephone number were found in the pocket of an immigrant who died in the desert near Sells, Arizona, in June 2012.

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