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Press Release

Anoka Man Pleads Guilty to Possession of a Machine Gun, Methamphetamine

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

MINNEAPOLIS – An Anoka man has pleaded guilty to illegal possession of a machinegun and possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, announced U.S. Attorney Andrew M. Luger.

According to court documents, in April 2022, the FBI began investigating Darrian Mitchell Nguyen, 50, based on a tip from a Confidential Human Source (CHS) that Nguyen was in possession of explosive devices, firearms, and methamphetamine, and had expressed a desire to join the Three Percenter militia group, a loosely organized anti-government extremist movement. The CHS told law enforcement that Nguyen kept weapons, including rifles, shotguns, handguns, a grenade launcher, and pipe bombs in “secret” rooms built within the walls of his residence.

According to court documents, to correct a debt owed to the defendant, Nguyen asked the CHS to provide him with firearms, specifically a short-barreled rifle equipped with an auto sear. Through text messages, Nguyen arranged to meet with the CHS to receive four auto sears and a short-barreled rifle equipped with an auto sear. During conversations with the CHS about obtaining firearms, Nguyen discussed interest in a revolution or coup-d’état. At the arranged meeting on October 4, 2022, after Nguyen took possession of the machine gun and the auto sears, law enforcement arrested Nguyen and executed a search warrant at his residence. Law enforcement recovered several firearms from a hidden room and elsewhere inside the residence, including an additional short-barreled rifle and a short-barreled shotgun that Nguyen was not registered to possess.

Nguyen pleaded guilty today in U.S. District Court before Senior Judge Donovan W. Frank to one count of possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and one count of unlawful possession of a machinegun.

This case is the result of an investigation conducted by the FBI. 

Assistant U.S. Attorney Manda M. Sertich and Department of Justice Trial Attorney Justin Sher are prosecuting the case.

Updated March 20, 2023

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