A group of Venezuelan military officers the government accused of plotting to blow up the presidential palace have been sent to prison.

Defense minister Vladimir Padrino Lopez announced on Twitter Wednesday that eight officers had been convicted for their role in a foiled coup attempt. The sentences ranged from five to eight years in prison.

President Nicolas Maduro announced in February that a retired air force general had been arrested and 13 other people were implicated in a plot to overthrow the South American country's 15 year-old socialist revolution.

Venezuelan officials said the officers had been conspiring with the United States, but never provided detailed evidence to the public.

At the time, the U.S. State Department called the accusation "ludicrous."