News and Press Releases

Coraopolis Man Admits Possessing and Selling a Machinegun

September 19, 2012

PITTSBURGH - A resident of Coraopolis, Pa., pleaded guilty in federal court to a charge of possession and transfer of a machinegun, United States Attorney David J. Hickton announced today.

Martin Joseph Saunders, 49, pleaded guilty to one count before Senior United States District Judge Maurice B. Cohill.

In connection with the guilty plea, the court was advised that Saunders possessed and sold parts that would convert an AR-15 Assault Rifle into a fully automatic weapon.

Judge Cohill scheduled sentencing for Jan. 8, 2013, at 10:00 a.m. The law provides for a total sentence of 10 years in prison, a fine of $250,000, or both. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed is based upon the seriousness of the offense and the criminal history, if any, of the defendant.

Assistant United States Attorneys Robert S. Cessar and Lee J. Karl are prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation conducted the investigation that led to the prosecution of Saunders.

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