News and Press Releases

July 13, 2010


DENVER – Andrew Gunzner, age 22, of Littleton, Colorado, pled guilty yesterday to possessing a machine gun and theft of firearms from a federal firearms licensee, United States Attorney David Gaouette and ATF Special Agent in Charge Marvin Richardson announced.  Gunzer’s guilty plea was tendered before U.S. District Court Judge Philip A. Brimmer.  Judge Brimmer is scheduled to sentence Gunzner on October 22, 2010.  Gunzner was originally indicted by a federal grand jury in Denver on April 19, 2010. 

According to the stipulated facts contained in the plea agreement, on March 17, 2010, at approximately 2:35 a.m., Denver Police officers conducted a traffic stop on a silver Jeep being driven with red emergency lights and a siren activated on Colorado Boulevard near Cherry Creek Drive.  During a lawful search of the Jeep, officers recovered four firearms: 1) a Heckler & Koch, Model MP-5, 9mm machine gun; 2) a Norinco, AK-47, 7.62 x 39 rifle; 3) a Taurus 410 Judge revolver; and 4) an FNH 5.7 x 28 semiautomatic pistol.  Officers also recovered firearms magazines, ammunition, handcuffs, an expandable baton, knives, holsters, a flash suppressor, an EOTEC scope/sight, and a flashlight.  The defendant was then arrested by Denver Police officers.

During an interview with police following his arrest, Gunzner stated that he is a sales agent and apprentice gunsmith at Prairie Arms Manufacturing, a federal firearms licensee in Littleton, Colorado.  He admitted that he had the fully automatic MP-5 machine gun in his vehicle, and that he did not have permission to remove the machine gun from Prairie Arms Manufacturing.  Further, Gunzner admitted that he had taken the machine gun to “play” with it, and that he was driving on Colorado Boulevard with a red light and siren activated on his Jeep for fun after leaving Shotgun Willies.

On April 7, 2010, a team of law enforcement officers from the ATF, together with law enforcement officers from Jefferson County, lawfully executed a state-court search warrant at Gunzner’s residence.  Officers and agents found and seized 14 firearms, loaded magazines, thousands of rounds of ammunition, brass casings, and ammunition loading materials.  Among the weapons seized was a short-barreled Olympic Arms. 223 caliber rifle with a machine gun sear inserted into it, making the rifle fully automatic.

After learning that merchandise may have been stolen by the defendant, Prairie Arms Manufacturing inventoried the merchandise at their business.  This inventory revealed that seven firearms, a machine gun auto sear, and $99,704.85 in other merchandise was missing. 

Gunzner faces not more than 10 years in federal prison, and up to a $250,000 fine for both counts he pled guilty to: possession of a machine gun and theft from a federal firearms licensee.

This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), and the Denver Police Department, with support from the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office.

The defendant is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ryan Bergsieker.