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Ex-Bankers Sentenced in Mexico

April 05, 2001|Associated Press

MEXICO CITY — Mexican courts handed down their first sentences against bankers caught in the U.S.' 1998 Operation Casablanca money-laundering sting, sentencing five former mid-level employees of Mexican banks to 10 years and four months in prison.

The five, mainly bank branch managers, were found guilty of engaging in organized crime and illicit financial operations in laundering $11 million for the Juarez drug cartel, the newspaper Reforma reported Wednesday.

The convictions and sentences against the five were handed down Tuesday. The convictions were among the first of bankers in Mexico under the country's relatively new money-laundering laws.

The employees were among 100 people and three Mexican banks indicted in a two-year investigation by the U.S. Customs Service into money laundering by the Cali and Juarez cartels.

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