Prosecutors accused the men of “professional smuggling of people resulting in death.”
The court in Traunstein, near the Austrian border, sentenced the 27-year-old main defendant to four years in prison, for organizing the boat that was to take Syrian refugees from Turkey to the island of Lesvos.
The boat struck a freighter shortly before reaching shore, killing 13 people. Two children are still missing.
Judges sentenced the man who drove the boat to two years in prison. A third man, who acted as a liaison for families, received a two-year suspended sentence.
The three defendants had come to Germany as refugees themselves.