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Press Release

Stockton Men Sentenced on Firearms Charges

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of California

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Somnang Chea, 34, of Stockton, was sentenced today to five years and three months in prison for unlawful possession of ammunition, U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott announced.

In a related case, on March 7, 2019, Phirum Phin, 31, of Stockton, was sentenced to seven years and eight months in prison for unlawful possession of a firearm.

According to court documents, Chea and Phin ran from a car after Stockton police officers attempted a traffic stop. They fled in opposite directions, each holding a firearm. Chea possessed a fully automatic handgun without a serial number. The gun was equipped with a laser sight and had a high-capacity magazine loaded with 22 rounds of ammunition. Chea also possessed 5.88 grams of methamphetamine. Phin possessed a stolen Glock handgun with a laser sight and a high-capacity magazine. Chea and Phin both have previous felony convictions and are prohibited from possessing firearms and ammunition.

Both cases were the product of an investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Stockton Police Department, and the San Joaquin County District Attorney’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney Cameron L. Desmond prosecuted the cases.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

Updated June 10, 2019

Firearms Offenses
Project Safe Neighborhoods
Press Release Number: 2:18-cr-123 KJM, 2:18-cr-124 KJM