3 get prison for holding immigrants hostage in AZ - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

3 get prison for holding immigrants hostage in AZ

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PHOENIX (AP) -

Three Mexican men accused of holding immigrants hostage at a Phoenix house last year have been sentenced to prison.

Federal prosecutors say 23-year-old Francisco Javier Astorga-Velarde and 24-year-old Jose Pedro Soto-Valdez were sentenced Tuesday to 12 years in federal prison.

They say 33-year-old Noel Galindez-Marmolejo received a 10-year prison term.

Prosecutors say all three defendants pleaded guilty in August to using a firearm during a crime of violence which in this case was hostage taking.

Authorities say the men held the immigrants at gunpoint in late 2012 while waiting for smuggling fees to be paid.

The immigrants allegedly were beaten and pistol-whipped by their captors, who reportedly threatened to kill the hostages.

According to investigators, one hostage's finger was broken and another said a sexual assault occurred at the house.

Copyright 2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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