EL PASO, Texas –
Three gunmen from the Barrio Azteca gang were sentenced to life in prison on Monday for killing a US consulate employee, her husband and the husband of another consulate employee in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. official said.
All three were found guilty by a federal jury in February following the March 2010 fatal shooting of consulate employee Lesley Enriquez, her husband Arthur Redelfs, a County warden El Paso, and Jorge Salcido Ceniceros. All three were sentenced Monday in El Paso, according to a statement by the US Attorney’s Office.
The victims were returning home from a children’s birthday party when they were mistakenly targeted and killed.
Trial evidence shows that Jose Guadalupe Diaz Diaz and Martin Artin Perez Marrufo, both of Chihuahua, Mexico, were the attack group that killed three people on March 13, 2010, after being mistaken for members of a gang rival group, according to the US Attorney’s office statement.
According to the same statement, “Barrio Azteca is a transnational criminal organization engaged in money laundering, fraud, and drug-related activities in El Paso, Texas, and elsewhere.”
According to the statement, the gang joined other drug cartels to fight the Sinaloa Cartel, then led by Joaquin ‘Chapo’ Guzman and its allies to control drug trafficking routes. via Juarez.
The drug route through Juarez, which lies across the border from El Paso, is important to drug cartels because it is a major drug-smuggling route into the United States, federal officials say know.