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MUSKEGON, Mich. (WOOD) - Nine men have pleaded guilty to and received sentences for federal drug trafficking crimes after a cocaine ring bust linked to one of the world's deadliest cartels.
The nine men were involved in a conspiracy to ship cocaine through the United States Postal Service from California to Muskegon between 2010 and 2012. The drugs were often shipped inside hollowed-out Xbox gaming consoles, according to federal prosecutors.
Money from selling the drugs was deposited in accounts at Bank of America and Chase Bank. About $350,000 found in those accounts is believed to have come from drug sales.
At least some of that cocaine -- between 20 and 30 kilograms -- came from the Sinaloa cartel, largely considered to be one of the most dangerous drug cartels in the world. Its leader is the world's most wanted man -- and one of its richest.
All nine men were sentenced to prison time:
- Lucio M. Nunez, 32, of Mecca, Calif.: 300 months (25 years);
- Jesus Joel Rios, 30, of Mecca: 132 months (11 years);
- Pablo G. Aguilera, 31, of Muskegon: 128 months (10.6 years);
- Tyree A. Brown, 40, of Muskegon: 60 months (5 years);
- Bradley E. Hatcher, 39, of Muskegon: 46 months (3.8 years);
- Adan V. Chaidez, 32, of Mecca: 36 months (3 years);
- Mario Alberto Molina-Martinez, 39, of Coachella, Calif.: 36 months (3 years);
- Victor Aguilera, 23, of Muskegon: 30 months (2.5 years);
- Mark Barnes, 23, of Muskegon: 30 month (2.5 years).
Two of the men involved in the conspiracy also distributed between 20 and 30 pounds of crystal methamphetamine in Minnesota.
The separate wrecks occurred around 5 a.m. north of Plainwell.
The heaviest snow showers will track through midday.
Ten people have filed a class action suit against Mercantile Bank, alleging the bank discriminated against minority business owners.