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Arellano-Felix Cartel Members Plead Guilty

SAN DIEGO (CN) - Four members of the Arellano-Felix drug cartel have pleaded guilty to drug conspiracy charges, federal prosecutors said. The violent Tijuana-based cartel has murdered hundreds of people and smuggled tons of cocaine and marijuana into the United States.

Jesus "Chuy" Labra-Aviles, Efrain Perez, Jorge Aureliano Felix and Armando Martinez-Duarte pleaded guilty this week after being extradited from Mexico in December 2008, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.

Labra-Aviles admitted he bribed military, government and law enforcement officials with "millions of dollars," prosecutors said. The government will recommend he be sentenced to 40 years in prison at his Jan. 4 sentencing.

Martinez-Duarte, who was a federal cop in Mexico, admitted he took sold the cartel information, escorted their drug shipments and hired other corrupt officers. He will be sentenced on Jan. 11.

Perez, who admitted the cartel killed people "in furtherance of the enterprise," will be sentenced on Feb. 8.

Prosecutors will recommend that Felix be sentenced to 30 years in prison at his Jan. 11 sentencing.

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