Published: Sep 06, 2012 12:21 PM EDT

MIAMI (AP) - A South Florida police officer has been sentenced to more than 12 years in federal prison for his role in a marijuana distribution ring.
    
The sentence was imposed Wednesday on Lawrence Perez, a former Hialeah Gardens police detective. Perez was convicted in May by a jury of marijuana possession and distribution conspiracy charges.
    
Trial testimony showed that Perez conducted two traffic stops in 2010 of people known to be transporting marijuana. A total of 24 pounds of marijuana was stolen by Perez and his coconspirators during those stops.
    
The group also planned to steal marijuana plants from a grow house in July 2010. But authorities learned of the plot and raided the house themselves, seizing 629 marijuana plants as well as packaged marijuana.

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