Al Garcia sentenced to five years on drug charges


Former Minneapolis City Hall power broker Al Garcia was sentenced to five years in prison today in federal court.

Garcia could have faced more time for his drug possession conviction--the sentencing typically ranges 78 to 97 months. But Garcia's attorney argued for less time based on his short criminal record--he has a misdemeanor for driving under the influence.

On Monday, Garcia will again go to court, this time on charges that he forced a client to have sex with him. Garcia tried unsuccessfully to delay his trial, according to Rochelle Olson of the Star Tribune, arguing that his attorney, Paul Edlund, was incompetent. The judge said the case should go forward.

Until last year, Garcia was a practicing criminal defense attorney. His license has been suspended. In connection with the rape allegation, Garcia is also facing a felony charge for tampering with a federal witness.