Former Miami Police Officer Sentenced for Aiding Drug Ring

A former Miami police officer has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for being part of a drug smuggling ring. 

Investigators say Ralph Mata helped drug traffickers bypass security at airports in New York and Miami. He was sentenced Wednesday in federal court in Newark.

Prosecutors say the former Miami-Dade police lieutenant was nicknamed the "Milk Man.''

Mata also allegedly used his airport connections to smuggle weapons concealed in luggage to the dealers and even suggested how they might carry out a potential hit on a rival gang.

He pleaded guilty in March to counts including aiding and abetting a narcotics conspiracy and conspiring to distribute cocaine. He initially faced a potential life sentence, but under a plea agreement faced between nine and 11 years.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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