North Carolina and North Dakota Police Chiefs and Federal Firearms Licensees Indicted for Conspiracy to Illegally Acquire Machineguns and Other Firearms
Greenbelt, Maryland – U.S. District Judge Theodore D. Chuang sentenced Marcus Gray, age 32, of Temple Hills, Maryland to 42 months in federal prison, followed by three years of supervised release, for engaging in the business of dealing firearms without a license.
The sentence was announced by Acting United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Jonathan F. Lenzner; Special Agent in Charge Timothy Jones of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) Baltimore Field Division; Assistant Special Agent in Charge Orville O. Greene of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Baltimore District Office; and Special Agent in Charge James A. Dawson of the Federal Bureau of Investigation- Washington Field Office Criminal Division.
According to his plea agreement, on November 1, 2019, Individual 1 called Art J. Vincent, Jr., age 43, of Capitol Heights, Maryland to purchase a firearm with no serial number engraved on the frame or receiver (also known as a “ghost gun”). Vincent provided pricing information and referred Individual 1 to Gray for the purchase of ghost guns. Gray then called Individual 1 and discussed the sale of firearms and the number of firearms.
During the conversation, Gray described himself as a source of firearms and offered Individual 1 a firearm that he could sell immediately for $1,500. Gray also stated that he had four ghost gun pistols for sale for $850 each and that each firearm came with extended magazines. Individual 1 also expressed the desire to purchase additional firearms for Individual 1’s buyer (Individual 2). Gray also explained the benefits of ghost guns, specifically, that the lack of serial numbers would hamper law enforcements ability to trace the firearm when being used during a crime. Individual 1 and Gray planned to convene at Vincent’s Maryland residence to conduct the sale of firearms.
The following day, Individual 1 called Gray to confirm the planned firearm purchase, the quoted price of $1,050, and reiterated that Individual 1’s buyer (Individual 2) would purchase additional firearms at a later date. Vincent and Individual 1 continued to discuss payment and gun retrieval logistics at a location near Vincent’s residence. Vincent confirmed that Gray would sell the firearm at Vincent’s residence. Following this, Vincent texted Individual 1 a Capitol Heights, Maryland address to meet and complete the firearms sale.
Law enforcement observed Gray handing Individual 1 a shopping bag containing a .223 caliber, semi-automatic pistol, with no serial number and a magazine containing 30 rounds of .223 ammunition in the residential parking lot. After completing the sale, Individual 1 sold the ghost gun to Individual 2 for $1,500.
Gray’s plea agreement also states on November 14, 2019, Individual 1 called Gray to purchase additional firearms for Individual 2. On November 26, 2019, Gray texted Individual 1 a picture of the ghost gun pistol with an extended magazine with the text “it’s ready”. Shortly after, Individual 1 texted Gray an address in Washington, D.C. to deliver the firearm. After the completion of the sale, Individual 1 sold Individual 2 a handgun and extended magazine bearing the same serial number of the gun Gray texted to Individual 1.
Neither Gray nor Vincent possessed a Federal Firearms License or permit through the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.
On March 18, 2021, Vincent was sentenced to 18 months in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release for engaging in the business of dealing firearms without a license.
Acting United States Attorney Jonathan F. Lenzner praised the ATF, DEA, and the FBI for their work in the investigation. Mr. Lenzner thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Rajeev R. Raghavan and Erin B. Pulice, who prosecuted the case.
# # #