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Press Release

False Statement on Firearms Form Lands Cedar Rapids Man in Federal Prison

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Iowa
Thompson purchased over 10 guns, sold some to heroin dealers

A man who falsified ATF forms in order to purchase firearms was sentenced October 2, 2019, to more than a year in federal prison.

Joseph Lamont Thompson, age 24, from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, received the prison term after a May 2, 2019 guilty plea to one count of making a false declaration during the purchase of a firearm.

In a plea agreement, Thompson admitted that between May 2017 and March 2018, he was an unlawful user of heroin.  Thompson also admitted that, between November 2016 and May 2018, he purchased at least 11 firearms in Iowa.  Law enforcement eventually recovered at least four of those guns in the possession of people other than Thompson.  Thompson admitted that he repeatedly falsified ATF forms while purchasing guns.  At sentencing, Thompson admitted that he had sold two of the guns he purchased to a heroin dealer, and that he had purchased one of the guns for another heroin dealer.

Thompson was sentenced in Cedar Rapids by United States District Court Judge C.J. Williams.  Thompson was sentenced to 12 months and one day of imprisonment.  He must also serve a three-year term of supervised release after the prison term.  There is no parole in the federal system.

Thompson was released on the bond previously set and is to surrender to the United States Marshal on October 16, 2019.

The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, and prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Dan Chatham.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN).  PSN is the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts.  PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

Court file information at

The case file number is 19-CR-00009-CJW-MAR.

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Updated October 3, 2019

Firearms Offenses
Project Safe Neighborhoods