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Border patrol killer sentenced to life in prison

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Mexican national among seven charged in death of Agent Brian Terry

TUCSON, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) - A man convicted of murder in the deadly shooting of a Border Patrol agent will spend the rest of his life behind bars.

On Wednesday a federal judge in Tucson sentenced Heraclio Osorio-Arellanes to life in prison for the 2010 murder of Agent Brian Terry. Osorio-Arellanes is one of seven people charged in connection with Terry's murder.

The seventh and final defendant, Jesus Favela-Astorga, still faces trial. Prosecutors are awaiting his extradition to the U.S.

Osorio-Arellanes was part of a crew trying to rob illegal immigrants in the desert near Rio Rico, Arizona in December of 2010. Terry and other agents were trying to arrest the crew when a shootout started. Gunfire from an AK-47 hit Terry. He died the next day.

Terry and his fellow agents were involved in a botched federal gun program known as "Fast and Furious" at the time of his death. Under the sting operation, federal agents sold guns to criminals with the intention of tracking them. The goal was to stem the flow of firearms into Mexico, and deprive the cartels of weapons.

But the plan backfired. Two guns sold during the operation were actually found at the scene of Terry's death. Others were also discovered at the scenes of other violent crimes.

Less than half of the 2,000 guns sold to criminals were ever recovered, and the operation never resulted in any significant arrests.

Agent Brian Terry was 40-years-old at the time of his death. He had served with the Border Patrol for three and a half years. He previously served as a police officer in Lincoln Park, Michigan.

Arizona News / Crime / State & Regional News

Lisa Sturgis

Lisa Sturgis recently returned to KYMA as its Digital Content Director, but she has a long history with the Desert Southwest.

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