Mario Iglesias-Villegas, otherwise known as “Grim Reaper,” and former state police officer Arturo Shows Urquidi were one of dozens of Sinaloa cartel leaders charged in the famed case involving Mexico’s most notorious drug lord, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman.
The Sinaloa cartel – one of the world’s largest drug-trafficking organizations under Guzman’s leadership – was responsible for multiple murders and smuggling mountains of cocaine and other drugs into the United States during the drug kingpin’s 25-year reign, prosecutors previously said in court papers.
Arturo Shows Urquidi (Drug Enforcmenet Agency)
(Drug Enforcmenet Agency)
Numerous witnesses who participated in the drug trafficking process, murders and kidnappings testified against Villegas and Urquidi, according to U.S.-Mexico border news website Border Report.
Criminal defense attorney Jorge Aristotelidis, the lead attorney representing Villegas, argued in court on Thursday that allowing former cartel members-turned-informants to give testimony would only benefit those seeking reduced sentences. Prosecutors, on the other hand, argued that informants have helped keep drugs off the streets, the outlet reported.
Recaptured drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman is escorted by soldiers at the hangar belonging to the office of the Attorney General in Mexico City, Mexico January 8, 2016. REUTERS/Henry Romero/File Photo
“Call this what it is, call it what it is, a poor attempt to find justice,” the attorney said.
El Paso Judge Frank Montalvo and a 14-member jury found Villegas and Urquidi guilty of various charges including conspiracy to possess narcotics, racketeering, money laundering and conspiracy to possess firearms. He also found Villegas guilty of other additional charges including conspiracy to kill in a foreign government and kidnapping.
Audrey Conklin is a digital reporter for FOX Business and Fox News. Email tips to [email protected] Follow her on Twitter at @audpants.