A Mexican national who crashed a vehicle while transporting illegal immigrants across the Texas border back in November of 2013 was sentenced Friday to 200 months in federal prison and was ordered to pay more than $2.65 million in restitution.
It was Nov. 23, 2013, when 19-year old Manuel Rendon-Lucas crashed his vehicle into construction barrier in Brooks County while attempting to flee from law enforcement. Five people were killed in that crash, and 10 more were injured, including himself.
All of the vehicle's occupants were determined to be illegal immigrants from Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador, Ecuador and Nicaragua. Of the five who were killed, one was a brush guide who assisted in smuggling the illegal immigrants across the border.
Several of the survivors who were injured sustained spinal fractures during the accident and remain paralyzed to this day.
Rendon-Lucas plead guilty to charges of conspiracy to transport illegal immigrants causing serious bodily injury on March 21 of this year. On Friday, Senior U.S. District Judge Janis Graham Jack handed down his sentence. Rendon-Lucas will serve the 200 months in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release. He will remain in federal custody until he transferred to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to serve out his term.