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Former Valley attorney sentenced to 30 months in prison for bribery scheme

2 years 1 month 19 hours ago Wednesday, March 23 2022 Mar 23, 2022 March 23, 2022 4:27 PM March 23, 2022 in News - Local

A former Valley attorney who pleaded guilty to bribery charges has been sentenced to 30 months in prison.

Roel Alanis pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy to commit bribery and bribery of a public official in April 2021. He was arrested in July 2019 after being accused of paying employees from the El Valle and Port Isabel immigrant detention centers for detainee roster lists.

RELATED: Weslaco attorney pleads guilty to bribery scheme

Those rosters contained names, dates of birth, country of origin and other information of detainees. According to a news release from the U.S. Attorney General’s Office, Alanis or his sister – Cynthia Alanis – received the lists and would visit those detainees or would have others drop in to try and get them to hire his law firm to fight their case.

Cynthia Alanis, the former Hidalgo County assistant district attorney, was sentenced to one year of probation for her involvement in the crime.

Benito Barrientez, Damian Ortiz and Exy Adelaida Gomez, three individuals listed in the release as the immigration detention employees who provided the lists, were also convicted and are pending sentencing. Each face up to 15 years in federal prison and a possible $250,000 fine.

Alanis’ sentencing will be followed by three years of supervised release.

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