LOS ANGELES (AP) — Two sheriff’s deputies have been sentenced to more than a year each in prison for trying to cover up the beating of a handcuffed inmate at the Los Angeles County jail.

Federal prosecutors said Joey Aguiar was sentenced to 18 months and Mariano Ramirez received 13 months after reaching a plea deal that spared them from being retried on a charge that they violated the inmate’s civil rights by using excessive force.

Prosecutors said in 2009 the deputies choked, struck, kicked and pepper-sprayed handcuffed inmate Bret Phillips and then wrote reports indicating he attacked them.

U.S. Attorney Eileen Decker said the men tried to cover up “an unwarranted attack upon an inmate.”

The deputies were among 21 sheriff’s employees charged in connection with a probe of corruption and abuse in the Sheriff’s Department.

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