EL PASO, Texas — A Texas man faces mandatory life in prison over a 2008 murder-for-hire scheme in Mexico in which his wife, her sister and their father were killed.
Authorities said he murdered his wife at her sister’s funeral service – after he killed both her sister and father to lure her there.
Samuel Velasco Gurrola of El Paso was convicted Monday of conspiracy to commit murder in a foreign country and conspiracy to cause foreign travel for murder for hire. Two of his relatives pleaded guilty to conspiracy-related counts and face up to life terms.
Texas prosecutors say Velasco was charged with aggravated sexual assault of a child and indecency with a child and wanted to stop his wife, Ruth Sagredo Escobedo, from testifying.
Her father was slain in October 2008 in Ciudad Juarez. Her sister, Cinthia Sagredo Escobedo, was gunned down the next month. Velasco’s wife was ambushed going to her sister’s funeral.
KDBC reports that he hired a hitman in 2008 to murder his wife’s father in Juarez, the Mexican border city which shares a border with El Paso, in order to lure her to the funeral.
That plot failed, and a month later Velasco’s sister-in-law was also found dead in Juarez. Sagredo was killed at her sister’s funeral procession.
It took the jury only three hours to convict Velasco of seven separate accounts.