SAN DIEGO (CN) – A top lieutenant in the Arellano-Felix drug cartel, and his brother, were sentenced to long prison terms and ordered to forfeit $6 million. Ismael Higuera-Guerrero was sentenced to 40 years in federal prison and Gilberto Higuera-Guerrero to 30 years.
Ismael, 46, admitted in March that he ran the drug cartel for the Arellano-Felix brothers from 1988 to 2000, overseeing importation of multi-ton shipments of cocaine and marijuana to the United States. He also admitted receiving millions of dollars for the dope and sending the money to Mexico and Colombia, and using it to bribe Mexican police and government officials, and to enforce the cartel’s “plaza,” or control of the market, in Tijuana and Mexicali, by kidnapping, torturing and killing rivals and government officials who refused to be bribed.
Gilberto, 39, pleaded guilty to similar charges; he worked for his older brother.