Federal Grand Jury Indicts Man in Conspiracy to Illegally Manufacture Firearms That Were Sent to Mexico
Defendant Also Allegedly Tried to Disguise Proceeds by Structuring Cash Transactions
DALLAS — Gary Busby, 63, formerly of Flower Mound, Texas, made his initial appearance in federal court today on an indictment, returned by a federal grand jury in Dallas last week, charging one count of conspiracy to manufacture firearms without a license and four counts of structuring transactions to evade reporting requirements, announced U.S. Attorney John Parker of the Northern District of Texas.
Busby, who now resides in Ruidoso, New Mexico, also entered a not guilty plea to the indictment and was released on bond.
According to the indictment, in December 2010, Busby and another, unnamed individual met Jose Maria Deleon at a gun show and sold him firearms. (Deleon was prosecuted and convicted in the Northern District of Texas on a federal firearms offense and was sentenced in September 2015 to 60 months in federal prison.) Even though he knew the two did not have federal firearms licenses (FFL), Deleon asked them if they would be willing to manufacture AR-15 and AK firearms receivers into fully-functional firearms for him, and they agreed. In fact, they did so in a series of transactions until December 2011. Deleon provided them with firearms receivers he had acquired from Maxwell Spencer Hodgkins. (Hodgkins was prosecuted and convicted in the Northern District of Texas on a federal firearms offense and was sentenced in February 2014 to 37 months in federal prison.) Sometimes Deleon paid them cash in advance and other times he paid them upon receipt of the manufactured firearms.
At some time during that period, Busby and the other individual became aware that the firearms they were manufacturing, and the firearms they agreed to manufacture, had and would be sent to Mexico. In fact, several firearms traced to Busby were found in or near Mexico.
In February 2012, officers with the Fort Worth Police Department saw Busby at a gun show negotiating gun purchases on behalf of Deleon. They observed a straw purchasing arrangement in which Busby would contact potential sellers, negotiate the price, and then call Deleon to purchase the firearms for cash. To further investigate that matter, officers conducted a traffic stop of Deleon. Busby, who was driving behind Deleon, also pulled over. Officers inventoried the firearms in Deleon’s vehicle and one was later recovered in Mexico.
During a search of Busby’s residence in July 2011, federal agents catalogued all the firearms and ammunition at the residence. That same day, Busby signed a letter putting him on notice that he was to cease and desist in engaging in the business of selling firearms without a license and advising him that several of the firearms he had sold had been recovered during criminal activities. In spite of the notification, one of the firearms catalogued that day at Busby’s residence was later found in Mexico by authorities.
The indictment alleges that from approximately April 2009 to February 2011, Busby lied on ATF forms related to firearms purchases by stating he was the actual transferee/buyer of the firearm, knowing that he would sell or trade those firearms to third parties.
The indictment further alleges that from approximately December 2010 to September 2012, Busby also illegally structured cash transactions to avoid having reports of his cash transactions recorded and reported to the government, so as to disguise the proceeds of illegally manufacturing firearms sent to Mexico.
An indictment is an accusation by a grand jury. A defendant is entitled to the presumption of innocence unless proven guilty. If convicted, however, the conspiracy count and each of the structuring counts carry a maximum statutory penalty of five years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is investigating the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Kate Rumsey is in charge of the prosecution.
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