Bay Stater Pleads Guilty In Illegal Scheme To Buy Firearms In Hooksett
CONCORD, N.H. – United States Attorney Emily Gray Rice announced that Michael Younge pleaded guilty in federal court to participating in an illegal scheme to purchase firearms. Younge pleaded guilty to one count of the federal crime of Aiding and Abetting the Making of a False Statement in Connection with the Attempted Acquisition of a Firearm. Younge, 26 years old, lived in Framingham and Boston, Massachusetts, prior to his arrest.
According to court documents and statements made during the hearing, Younge, two associates and Younge’s girlfriend, Tasha Gardner, visited a federally licensed firearms dealer in Hooksett, N.H., on July 15, 2015. Younge and the one of the associates, facilitated by the second associate, solicited Gardner to buy hand guns for Younge and the first associate. Gardner agreed. Younge and the first associate were both convicted felons and therefore could not legally buy a firearm themselves. Younge and the first associate were also both residents of Massachusetts. Under federal law, it is illegal for a firearms dealer to sell hand guns to out-of-staters. Gardner attempted to purchase the firearms for Younge and the first associate. In connection with that attempt Gardner filled out a form legally required for all intrastate over-the-counter gun purchases. On that form, Gardner falsely certified that she was the “actual purchaser” of the two hand guns. The transfer of firearms was never accomplished because employees of the firearms dealer became suspicious and declined to complete the transaction.
United States District Judge Landya McCafferty took Younge’s guilty plea and scheduled his sentencing for March 16, 2017. He is subject to a statutory maximum sentence of ten years imprisonment, a fine of up to $250,000 or both. Younge is detained pending trial. Gardner pleaded guilty to a related charge on November 4, 2016, and is scheduled for sentencing on February 21, 2017.
This matter was investigated by the Bedford Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives with assistance from the Manchester (N.H.) Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Bill Morse.