FARGO — A federal circuit court has rejected the appeal of a Minnesota man convicted of running a wide-ranging methamphetamine operation and ordering the killing of a man in North Dakota.
Modesto Torrez, of Angus, Minnesota, was sentenced in 2017 to two life prison terms after a jury convicted him of numerous charges, including drug conspiracy and murder.
Authorities say Torrez ordered the hit of 24-year-old Austin Forsman in March 2016 while Forsman sat in a vehicle at a Grand Forks truck stop. Then-U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch decided against seeking the death penalty against Torrez.
Thirteen people were indicted the conspiracy to distribute large quantities of meth in North Dakota and Minnesota.
A three-judge panel of the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals denied Torrez's arguments in a ruling released Friday.