News and Press Releases

TWO SENTENCED FOR STRAW PURCHASE OF ASSAULT STYLE FIREARM

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 14, 2012

HILTON FLUKER, age 26, a resident of Avondale, Louisiana, was sentenced today by U. S. District Judge Helen G. Berrigan to fifty months (50) months imprisonment for his involvement in the straw purchase of an assault style rifle with a seventy-five round drum magazine and possessing such weapon as a convicted felon, announced U. S Attorney Jim Letten.

In announcing her sentence, Judge Berrigan departed upward from the recommended guideline sentencing range citing the seriousness of the offense and Fluker’s criminal history. In addition to the term of imprisonment, Judge Berrigan imposed a term of three (3) years of supervised release following the term of imprisonment, during which time the defendant will be under federal supervision and risks an additional term of imprisonment should he violate any terms of his supervised release.

FLUKER, a previously convicted felon, pled guilty to illegally obtaining a Roman-Dracko, 7.62 “AK-47" style assault rifle, illegally possession of ammunition and conspiracy to acquire a firearm by providing a false statement to a federally licensed firearms dealer.

KENA JAMES, age 23, a resident of Avondale, Louisiana, who pled guilty to illegally obtaining a Roman-Dracko, 7.62 “AK-47" style assault rifle (for FLUKER) and conspiracy to acquire a firearm by providing a false statement to a federally licensed firearms dealer, was also sentenced today by U. S. District Judge Helen G. Berrigan to three (3) years of probation and three (3) months of home detention with electronic monitoring.

Agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) along with detectives from Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office (JPSO) and officers from the Kenner Police Department (KPD) were involved in an operation, on June 25, 2011, at the Great Southern Gun and Knife Show at the Pontchartrain Center in Kenner, LA, targeting the illegal diversion of firearms from legal commerce by third party “straw purchasers” to prohibited individuals.

U. S. Attorney Jim Letten stated:

“In order to protect the safety of our citizens and the recovery of our community; and recognizing the constitutional right of law abiding citizens to legally acquire and possess firearms, the U. S. Department of Justice, including the U. S. Attorney’s Office, ATF and our enforcement partners, will continue to enforce federal laws which prohibit the possession of firearms and ammunition by convicted felons, and which further prohibit individuals from falsifying federal forms in an attempt to fraudulently arm convicted felons through “straw purchases.” Today’s case is yet another clear signal that prosecuting prohibited persons and those who assist them in illegally obtaining firearms is an important part of our strategy to reduce gun crime.”

After sentencing, FLUKER was remanded to the custody of the United States Marshals Service to begin his term of imprisonment.

This case was investigated by the New Orleans Police Department and Special Agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney, Tony Gordon Sanders pursuant to the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods program, the top domestic enforcement priority designed to reduce and ultimately eliminate violent gun crime in our communities.

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