Skip to comments.14 arrested in undercover federal probe of Nevada gun shows
Posted on 05/22/2004 4:54:17 PM PDT by TERMINATTOR
RENO, Nev. (AP) - Federal agents working undercover at gun shows in Nevada the past year have arrested 14 suspects on a variety of firearms charges that include illegally possessing machine guns and explosives, agents said Friday.
The FBI, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and local law enforcement agencies joined to apprehend the 13 men and one woman in five Western states - Nevada, California, Utah, Idaho and Washington - as part of "Operation Over the Line."
Nine of the suspects were arrested after search warrants were served Friday, and five others already were in custody as part of the investigation, said Daniel Bogden, U.S. attorney for Nevada.
They've been indicted by federal grand juries in Nevada and Idaho. The indictments, some dating to February, were unsealed Friday.
"Undercover ATF agents purchased nearly 40 firearms using different Reno gun shows as the hub of activity," said John Torres, ATF special agent in charge of the San Francisco office.
"We also seized explosives at one residence in Reno today," including 20 blasting caps and 20 feet of detonating cord, he said.
The agents purchased guns over the past year at about 10 gun shows, one in Las Vegas and the rest in Reno, including large events held at the Reno Hilton hotel-casino and the Reno-Sparks convention center, authorities said. The weapons include eight machine guns, 10 hand guns and 15 long guns, Torres said.
Items seized include a bulletproof vest, assault rifles and semiautomatic pistols - specifically a Korean-made AK47 machine gun, a .45-caliber submachine gun, an AK47 semiautomatic assault pistol, a Glock 9 mm pistol, a Glock .40-caliber pistol and a Baretta semiautomatic pistol.
"We want to show that you can't use gun shows as a vehicle to conduct illegal firearm sales," Torres said.
The operation was "part of a nationwide commitment to reduce the number of illegal guns in possession out there," Bogden said.
Assistant Washoe County Sheriff Jim Lopey said the operation was a huge success.
"We got a lot of weapons off the street," he said.
Torres and Bogden said each of the suspects appeared to have been acting independently and none is known to be involved in terrorism or belong to a gang.
"But we want to be sure they do not get into the hands of gang members," he said.
The indictments show undercover buys were made at the "Las Vegas Gun Show" on Jan. 17 and at various sessions of the "Big Reno Gun Show" on April 23 and last year on Aug. 16 and Nov. 15.
"We are not targeting gun shows. We're targeting people who use gun shows as a conduit to traffic illegally in firearms," Torres said.
A message left at the number for the Big Reno Gun Show was not immediately returned. Another listed contact, Donald Shiffer of Carson City, was out of town and not immediately available for comment, said a woman who answered the telephone and identified herself as his daughter.
Nina Delgadillo, senior special agent and spokeswoman for the ATF field office in Sacramento, emphasized that most gun show dealers follow the law.
"This is a minority of people who are using gun shows to conduct illegal activities," she said.
"Unfortunately you have this other kind of people mixed in here," added Thomas Cannon, ATF special agent in charge of the Reno office.
Several of the people charged were felons or were covered by domestic violence restraining orders and were prohibited from possessing firearms, Bogden said.
Only licensed dealers can sell firearms at gun shows and they can sell directly to people only from within the same state. Sales to out-of-state buyers must include a licensed dealer from their home state.
Most of the charges in the indictments are punishable by up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine, although several carry maximum sentences of 10 years in prison, including possession of a machine gun and possession of a firearm by a felon, Bogden said.
Not in California, and several other states. Sales MUST go through a dealer. State law, not Federal.
There's that same trite, tired line they always use. As if the old lady who brings a rusted .38 to a gun amnesty buy back would otherwise be using it to rob bodegas.
Class III NFA and explosives have definite restrictions over who can sell them (individuals cannot sell them to persons who don't have a licenss).
But I'll turn it around: The Stupid Liberals have been shouting about the "gun show loophole" that allows this to happen. But we now see that it is illegal and that all we really need to do is enforce the law. We don't need new laws.
Depends on the state, one of those pesky "loopholes" the
socialists are intent on closing.
Gee 14 people busted, in five states, over a year, must be
some kind of pandemic huh.
How is it illegal to have a bulletproof vest? And what is an "AK47 assault pistol" ?!?!?!
AWB will be renewed. Count on it.
Similar noises have been made in Ohio wanting to make armor illegal for citizens.
In some states it is illegal to own a bullet proof vest.
Okay, I'll play. Name one gun law that is NOT an infringement of the Second Amendment.
"shall not be infringed"; now how much clearer can that be ?
Licenses,permits,registration are all infringements. Of course, the judges of the twentieth century turned the Constitution on its head.
All this talk about unconstitutional "gun laws" that aren't laws is giving me a headache, so I'll just agree - there are no gun laws!
When Malvo was on the rampage, BPF were selling like hotcakes except they were being brought in from out of state cuz they could not be legal baught or sold, I think it was Md, not for sure .
So if I buy some ceramic plates and put them into a fishing vest, I am committing a felony?!?! How the heck can you define a flat piece of ceramic or a yard's worth of Kevlar to be a firearm?!?!? ARGH....
Bush just may be a conservative ,as in one who wants no change;we wish for a reactionary to lead us back to a nation of free,self-responsible people.
Yeah, NWO statists would like us to believe the Second
Ammendment is a "loophole".
Lawyers need not refer to Johnson,Funk and Wagnal, or any other dictionary;was it the rabbit or the Red Queen who said :words mean what I want them to mean"?
In some or perhaps all states it is a felony for a convicted felon to possess a bulletproof vest.
How they gave up a right to passive self protection is beyond me.
This federal action is a complete perversion of our constitution by ALL involved..
And the buck stops at the white house.
Note that NO connection to any TERROISTS is suspected or impugned;gosh I guess we have already caught ALL the terrorists hiding in the U.S. of A. !!!! At least we can spare the people to spend months harrassing a few citizens.
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