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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Pennsylvania

Friday, February 2, 2018

Hazleton Man Sentenced To Two Years In Prison For Making Straw Purchases Of Firearms

SCRANTON - The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that Amaury Guzman-Escobar, age 31, of Hazleton, Luzerne County, was sentenced today by United States District Court Judge Malachy E. Mannion, to serve two years in prison on the charge of conspiracy to make false statements to a federally licensed firearms dealer. 

According to United States Attorney David J. Freed, Guzman-Escobar admitted that he and another individual, Crystal Muentes, age 34, of Scranton, provided false information regarding the purchase of two firearms from Dave’s Gun Shop, in Drums, Luzerne County, on June 1, 2016 and June 17, 2016, and the purchase of a firearm from Ed’s Sports Shop in Tamaqua, Schuylkill County, on June 17, 2016.  Two of the firearms purchased by Guzman-Escobar and Muentes were later recovered in the mail by Postal Inspectors in Puerto Rico.

In addition to the sentence of imprisonment, Judge Mannion ordered that Guzman-Escobar be supervised by a probation officer for three years after his release from prison.   

Crystal Muentes was previously sentenced by Judge Mannion to serve two years of probation. 

This matter was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the United States Postal Inspection Service.   Members of the Scranton Police Department also participated in the investigation.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert J. O’Hara prosecuted the case.

This case was brought as part of the Violent Crime Reduction Partnership (“VCRP”), a district wide initiative to combat the spread of violent crime in the Middle District of Pennsylvania. Led by the United States Attorney’s Office, the VCRP consists of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies whose mission is to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who commit violent crimes with firearms.

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Firearms Offenses
Updated February 2, 2018