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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Massachusetts

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, September 16, 2021

Connecticut Man Sentenced for Firearm Trafficking

Defendant sold two “ghost guns” to undercover officer

BOSTON – A Connecticut man was sentenced today in federal court in Boston in connection with selling two “ghost guns.”

Brian McCarthy, 33, of Bridgeport, Conn., was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Nathaniel M. Gorton to 30 months in prison and two years of supervised release. On May 14, 2021, McCarthy pleaded guilty to one count of dealing firearms without a federal license.

Between June 17 and July 31, 2020, McCarthy travelled to Massachusetts and sold an undercover officer two Glock-style Privately Made Firearms (PMF) he had personally fabricated. PMFs are firearms that are not made by firearm manufacturers; instead, firearm manufactures sell individual buyers firearm parts, and the buyer uses various firearm drilling tools to construct and assemble the parts into a functional firearm. PMFs are also known as “ghost guns” because they are not serialized. McCarthy was taken into custody following the sale.

A subsequent search of McCarthy’s apartment resulted in the seizure of two additional Glock-style PMFs, one AR15/M4-type rifle upper receiver, accessories for AR15/M4 rifles, multiple semi-automatic magazines, approximately 250 rounds of ammunition and various firearm construction and assembly tools.

Acting United States Attorney Nathaniel R. Mendell; James Ferguson, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Boston Field Division; Plymouth County District Attorney Timothy J. Cruz; and Bristol County District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorney John Dawley of Mendell’s Organized Crime and Gang Unit prosecuted the case.

This prosecution is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. The Department of Justice reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.

Topic(s): 
Firearms Offenses
Component(s): 
Updated September 16, 2021