Drug trafficker sentenced to 16 years in San Diego

January 30, 2012 - 10:35 PM

SAN DIEGO (AP) — A former high-ranking member of the Arellano Felix drug cartel has been sentenced to 16 years in prison in San Diego for coordinating the shipments of tons of cocaine from Colombia to Mexico and eventually to the U.S.

U-T San Diego (http://bit.ly/A0OS1S ) reports that Rigoberto Yanez-Guerrero was sentenced Monday. He had been in prison in Mexico awaiting trial since 2001. He was extradited to the U.S. to face federal charges in 2010 for narcotics trafficking, money laundering and organized crime-related offenses and pleaded guilty in July.

Federal prosecutors say Yanez was the chief operator of the cartel in Mexico City between 1995 and 2001. During that time, he allegedly orchestrated the shipments of 5 to 10 tons of cocaine that made its way to the U.S.