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PHOENIX -- A Mexican man has been sentenced to more than eight years in federal prison in a drop house case in Phoenix.

Federal prosecutors say 26-year-old Diego DeLeon Chavez received a 97-month prison term Monday followed by five years of supervised release.

Chavez pleaded guilty three months ago to conspiracy to harbor and transport immigrants who were in the country illegally.

Authorities say Chavez operated a drop house and human smuggling operation in Phoenix in July 2012.

Arizona Department of Public Safety officials say two people from Guatemala being transported by Chavez's operation that month died after being ejected in a rollover accident that injured 12 others in the vehicle.

The driver of the vehicle fled from the crash scene, but was arrested days later. He's awaiting sentencing in the case.

Associated Press,

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