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Cartel leader pleads guilty

October 24, 2009|Times Wire Reports

A Mexican drug kingpin who led a fearsome cartel for more than a decade has pleaded guilty to U.S. drug and racketeering charges.

Miguel Angel Caro Quintero pleaded guilty in Denver federal court to one count of racketeering in Colorado and one count of conspiracy to distribute marijuana in Arizona. He faces as many as 20 years in prison but could serve as few as 10 years.

He is expected to be sentenced Feb. 4.

Caro Quintero, 46, led the Sonora cartel, which U.S. authorities say smuggled thousands of tons of marijuana and cocaine to the United States in the 1980s.

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