A federal judge reduced prison sentences Tuesday for drug traffickers and former lawmen convicted in the Panama Unit scandal.
U.S. District Judge Randy Crane approved sentence reductions for nine lawmen and two drug traffickers Tuesday. Many had filed motions for sentence reductions after the government adopted new guidelines for drug crimes.
“If the courts want to be lenient on law enforcement officers who are duty-bound to protect us — and they decided to be the criminals — then everything else really becomes screwy in the criminal justice system,” said former Hidalgo County District Attorney Rene Guerra, who added that he considers corrupt cops worse than regular criminals.
The Mission Police Department and the Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office created the Panama Unit to target street-level drug dealers in western Hidalgo County.
On paper, the Sheriff’s Office and Mission assigned supervisors to monitor the Panama Unit. In practice, though, members answered to Jonathan Treviño, the son