HOUSTON (AP) - Four Mexican nationals have been sent to federal prison for their involvement in a human smuggling case where 82 people in the country illegally were held captive in a Houston house.
All four received 37 months in prison Thursday from U.S. District Judge Keith Ellison after pleading guilty to conspiracy to harbor and transport illegal aliens. Prosecutors say they'll likely face deportation proceedings once their sentences are served.
The case began last September when a woman from Nicaragua told Houston police about an extortion scheme that threatened her daughter's life. That led investigators to the Houston home where the people from six countries were held by armed captors.
U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson identified the four as Luis Trejo-Onofre, 30; Jose Santos-Solorzano, 24; Jose Victor Perez-Olivas, 42; and Gumecindo Jaime-Martinez, 37.
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