The leader of a scheme to smuggle Guatemalan teens into the U.S. and keep them as virtual slaves at an Ohio egg farm was sentenced Monday by a federal court to at least 15 years of prison, the Toledo-based news outlet The Blade reported.
Castillo-Serrano is a Guatemalan who is in the U.S. illegally. The federal judge said Castillo-Serrano will be deported back to his native country after he's served his sentence.
Some of the workers he smuggled were reportedly as young as 14 or 15 years old. According to The Blade, they were forced to work for up to 12 hours a day de-beaking and vaccinating chickens, loading crates and clean coops.
More than 40 workers, all Guatemalan, were removed during the December 2014 raid.
U.S. District Court Judge James Carr delayed sentencing Aroldo Castillo-Serrano in April after learning that he hadn't given up properties taken from the victims' families.
Prosecutors say he made victims' family members sign over deeds to their property in Guatemala to pay for transporting the boys, with assurances they would be enrolled in school.
Castillo-Serrano agreed to plead guilty last year to forced labor conspiracy, forced labor, witness tampering and encouraging illegal entry into the country.
Public court records don't yet indicate whether the property issue has been resolved. A message was left Friday for his attorney.
The AP contributed to this report.