Judge sentences boat pilot to 18 years in prison for 3 smuggling deaths
Debris is littered along the shoreline off Cabrillo Monument on May 2, 2021, in San Diego after a vessel overturned earlier in the day off the Point Loma area. - Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images North America/TNS

SAN DIEGO — The smuggler who was at the helm of an overloaded 40-foot vessel that capsized off Point Loma last year, causing three migrants to drown and sparking a chaotic rescue effort, was sentenced Friday to 18 years in prison. Antonio Hurtado, 40, who had been living aboard the aging trawler-style boat, was illegally shuttling 32 migrants into the United States the morning of May 2, 2021, when the vessel drifted onto the rocks below Cabrillo National Monument and violently broke apart. He pleaded guilty in April to felony charges of attempted human smuggling resulting in death and attempte...