TUCSON — A man convicted in the shooting death of a federal Border Patrol agent during a firefight that revealed the government’s botched gun-smuggling investigation known as Operation Fast and Furious was sentenced Monday to 30 years in prison.
Manuel Osorio-Arellanes, who is from El Fuerte in the Mexican state of Sinaloa, is the only person to be convicted in the Dec. 14, 2010, shooting death of Border Patrol agent Brian Terry near the Arizona-Mexico border.
US District Court Judge David C. Bury handed down the sentence, 360 months with credit for time served.
The shootout erupted just north of the Arizona border city of Nogales as Osorio-Arellanes and four other men who are accused of sneaking into the country to rob marijuana smugglers approached Terry and three other agents who were targeting such rip-off crews.
Osorio-Arellanes was wounded in the shootout and was the only person arrested at the scene. Four other alleged colleagues fled to Mexico. Two of the four are in Mexican custody, while two remain fugitives.
Osorio-Arellanes maintains he was not the shooter who killed Terry, and prosecutors agree that evidence supports his claim.
Two rifles bought by a gun-smuggling ring that was being monitored in the Fast and Furious investigation were found at the firefight.