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News Release
U.S. Department of Justice
Peter F. Neronha
United States Attorney
District of Rhode Island

September 13, 2012

Defendants Sentenced in Stolen Firearms Case

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Nathaniel Kelley, 26, of Newport,Vermont was sentenced today in U.S. District Court to 100 months incarceration, by Chief District Court Judge Mary M. Lisi, for his role in the theft of 20 firearms from two firearms dealers in Vermont. His co-defendant, Anthony DeSanto, Jr., 33, of Morgan, Vermont, had been sentenced to 51 months incarceration by Chief Judge Lisi on May 31, 2012, for his role in the offense. They were each ordered to serve three years supervised release following their prison terms.

Kelley and DeSanto pleaded guilty to being felons in possession of a firearm and possession of one or more stolen firearms on May 30 and March 15, 2012, respectively.

The sentences were announced by Peter F. Neronha, United States Attorney for the District of Rhode Island; Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division; and Guy N. Thomas, Special Agent in Charge, of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

According to information presented to the court at the time of Kelley’s and DeSanto’s guilty pleas, in the early morning hours of September 29, 2011, special agents of the ATF, detectives of the Fall River Police Department, and detectives of the North Smithfield Police Department executed a search warrant at the Traveler’s Motor Lodge in North Smithfield, R.I.  Agents found and seized 20 firearms of various makes and models that had been reported stolen from two firearms dealers in Vermont.  According to a post-arrest statement made by Kelley, he transported the guns from Vermont to Rhode Island with the intention of selling them in exchange for drugs or money.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen G. Dambruch.

This case was investigated by the ATF, the Fall River Police Department, and the North Smithfield Police Department.



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