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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of New Hampshire

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Massachusetts Man Pleads Guilty To Gun Charges

          CONCORD, N.H. – John Wachaga, 22, of Lowell, Massachusetts, has entered a guilty plea in the United States District Court for the District of New Hampshire to one count of aiding and abetting the making of a material false statement in connection with the acquisition of a firearm, and one count of possessing a firearm as a convicted felon, announced United States Attorney Emily Gray Rice.

          On May 4, 2014, officers from the Lowell, Massachusetts Police Department stopped a vehicle being driven by Wachaga.  During the stop, officers seized a handgun from underneath Wachaga’s seat.  Upon further investigation, agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) learned that Wachaga had used another individual to purchase the firearm for him in New Hampshire, because a prior felony conviction precluded him from doing so on his own.

          The statutory maximum penalty for the charges to which Wachaga pleaded guilty is ten years’ imprisonment and a fine of up to $250,000.  Wachaga is scheduled for sentencing in August 2016.  The court will sentence Wachaga after it has had the opportunity to review a presentence investigation report prepared by the United States Probation and Pretrial Services Office and considers the federal advisory sentencing guideline for the charges.

          This prosecution arose from an investigation conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (Boston and New Hampshire), in conjunction with the Lowell, Massachusetts Police Department.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Nick Abramson.


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Updated April 27, 2016