Fast and Furious gun buyer sentenced to prison - Fox 2 News Headlines

Fast and Furious gun buyer sentenced to prison

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Jaime Avila Jr. Jaime Avila Jr.
PHOENIX -

One of the men arrested and charged in the botched ATF gun trafficking operation, known as "Fast and Furious" was sentenced in a federal courtroom Wednesday.

Jaime Avila was a straw purchaser for Mexican drug gangs.

Border Patrol agent Brian Terry as killed in a shootout with a Mexican drug gang near Rio Rico, Ariz. back in December 2010.  A gun purchased by Avila was linked to his killing.

Avila, flanked by his defense attorney, told the judge he was sorry for being a straw buyer, purchasing 52 guns, including .50 caliber sniper rifles and AK-47 assault rifles.

He admitted he helped to bring those guns to the Mexican border to turn over to murderous drug smugglers.

In court, Brian's cousin, Robert Heyer, stood up.  He told the judge Terry was intensely patriotic, loyal and honest.  He asked for as much prison time as possible for Avila.

"I am sure Mr. Avila is remorseful, but that shouldn't discount the severe consequences of his actions and the 19 co-defendants in this case."

As Avila's family looked on in tears, the judge sentenced him to 57 months in a federal prison.  That's 4 years, 9 months.

"My brother is a good guy.  He made bad choices, but he is going to try to move forward and make better choices after all this is done and over with," said Jaime's sister Beatriz Avila.

The family of Brian Terry wants the investigation into "Fast and Furious" to continue.

Before Avila was led out in shackles, he told the judge he hopes to improve himself in prison, so when he gets out, he can be a good father to his son, who is 2 years old.

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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