News and Press Releases

United States Attorney Jenny A. Durkan
Western District of Washington

Oregon Man Charged With Attempting To Illegally Export
Military-Grade Rifle Scopes Overseas

Items Subject to Special Licenses Under International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 6, 2011

GEOFFREY B. ROOSE, of Corvalis, Oregon, was arrested this afternoon and charged by criminal complaint with Attempt to Violate the Arms Export Control Act, announced U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan.  ROOSE came to the attention of law enforcement after listing for sale on eBay several restricted, military-grade rifle scopes.  ROOSE will make his initial appearance on the charge in U.S. District Court in Eugene.  His initial appearance in U.S. District Court in Seattle will be scheduled at a later date.

According to the charging document, an agent with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) learned that ROOSE had sold export-restricted rifle scopes to individuals overseas without a required export license.  ROOSE had continued to list rifle scopes for sale on eBay.  The investigator sent ROOSE an email via the eBay site advising him that the rifle scopes that he was advertising were restricted for export.  The agent received an email in response that read only “Thanks.”  Despite that warning, the complaint alleges that ROOSE continued to offer the restricted items for sale on eBay with no limitation on where they could be exported.  Acting in an undercover capacity, an agent purchased one of the rifle scopes, asking that it be shipped to an address in Europe.  ROOSE shipped the scope, but it was seized by law enforcement before it left the United States.  ROOSE described the rifle scope on customs paperwork as being a “telescope w/Mount” valued at $150.00.  ROOSE had sold the rifle scope to the agent for $1699.99.  A court authorized search of ROOSE’s email account revealed that he had previously taken steps to conceal the export of a rifle scope to a customer overseas because the scope was restricted for export. 

Attempt to Violate the Arms Export Control Act is punishable by up to twenty years imprisonment, three years of supervised release, and a one million dollar fine. 

The charges contained in the criminal complaint are only allegations.  A person is presumed innocent unless and until he or she is proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

The case is being investigated by U.S. Immigration and Custom Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Thomas Woods.

 

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