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      Lawyer gets 42 months prison in cash for court favors scandal

      Ray Marchan File Photo

      A South Texas attorney convicted of bribing a lower court judge in exchange for legal favors has been sentenced to 3 1/2 years in prison.

      Ray Marchan was sentenced Thursday in Brownsville. He was the first of a dozen suspects swept up in a four-year investigation of former state District Judge Abel Limas to go to trial.

      Limas has pleaded guilty and awaits sentencing.

      Marchan in June was convicted on seven counts, including racketeering. But the federal judge this week overturned one mail fraud conviction.

      Prosecutors accused Marchan of paying Judge Limas more than $11,000 in 2008 in exchange for favorable decisions. Marchan's defense argued he was just loaning money to a friend.