A federal prosecutor says he hopes the conviction of a third Mexican in the torture-slaying of a U.S. drug agent will send a message to drug lords, but the defense lawyer maintains his client was an innocent victim of a system bent on revenge.

Drug trafficker Jesus Felix Gutierrez, 38, was convicted Wednesday of arranging the escape from Mexico of a drug baron suspected of masterminding the slayings of Enrique Camarena of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and his pilot.The same federal court jury earlier convicted two co-defendants of direct participation in the slayings of Camarena and Alfredo Zavala Avelar near Guadalajara, Mexico, in February 1985. The verdicts followed an eight-week trial.

Besides the three tried in Los Angeles in the Camarena case, five other men have been tried in Mexico and are in jail awaiting verdicts and sentences.