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Press Release

Worcester Man Arrested as Part of a Federal and State Law Enforcement Firearms Takedown

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

BOSTON – A Worcester man was arrested today as part of a coordinated federal and state effort that resulted in the arrests of nine individuals who have been charged with firearm-related offenses.

Steven Rivera, 24, was charged by complaint with one count of being a felon in possession of ammunition.  Rivera will be detained pending a hearing scheduled for July 13, 2017.

According to the complaint unsealed today, Rivera – who had previously been convicted of multiple felonies, including a drug-related offense – sold two handguns and numerous rounds of ammunition to a cooperating source in Worcester on Feb. 14, 2017.  One of the handguns had an obliterated serial number, and the other had been stolen.  The complaint also alleges that on Feb. 28, 2017, Rivera sold two other handguns and numerous rounds of ammunition to the same cooperating source.  In addition, during a recorded phone call, Rivera offered to sell heroin to the cooperating source and referenced that someone “almost dropped” from some particularly potent heroin.

Eight others were arrested on state charges as part of the investigation into gun and narcotics trafficking in the Worcester area. During the course of the investigation, law enforcement purchased nine guns from nine defendants, including several handguns, two shotguns, and an assault rifle with a 100-round capacity drum magazine; multiple rounds of ammunition; and narcotics. Law enforcement seized several more guns today during the sweep.

The charge of possessing ammunition after being convicted of a felony provides for a sentence of no greater than 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release, and a fine of $250,000.  Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based on the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Acting United States Attorney William D. Weinreb; Mickey D. Leadingham, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Boston Field Division; Colonel Richard D. McKeon, Superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police; Worcester County District Attorney Joseph D. Early Jr.; and Worcester Police Chief Steven M. Sargent made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorney William F. Abely of Weinreb’s Worcester Branch Office is prosecuting the case.

The details contained in the charging documents are allegations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.


Updated June 29, 2017

Firearms Offenses