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The 22-year-old man accused of raping and strangling his 15-year-old sister-in-law was sentenced Monday to 25 years to life in prison by Orleans County Court Judge James Punch.
Carlos Cardenas of East State Street, Albion, had pleaded guilty June 20 to second-degree murder just as his trial on charges of two counts of second-degree murder, and first- and third-degree rape, was about to start for the Jan. 15, 2011, killing of Katherine “Katy” Sanchez.
Cardenas, a Mexican citizen who is in the United States illegally, was arrested Feb. 18, 2011, a month after the teenager was last seen. He admitted in an 11-page signed confession that he had sexual relations with the teen, then strangled her when she threatened to tell her sister about the incidents.
The killer later led investigators to a Town of Ridgeway apple orchard where he had hidden the body in a tote, after first stashing the remains in the basement of his house.
Orleans County District Attorney Joseph V. Cardone had previously said he planned to seek the maximum sentence of 25 years to life, noting that a previous plea deal of 20 years to life had been rejected by Cardenas.
Cardone has said he expects that Cardenas will remain incarcerated at least 25 years and that it is doubtful he will be paroled. The DA also has noted that Cardenas will be subject to deportation proceedings once his sentence is completed.

email: lmichel@buffnews.com