Monmouth County Man Sentenced to Five Years in Prison for Role in Gun Trafficking Conspiracy and Possessing Firearm as Previously Convicted Felon
TRENTON, N.J. – A Monmouth County, New Jersey, man with a prior felony conviction was sentenced today to 60 months in prison for illegally possessing a firearm and conspiring to illegally sell firearms, including multiple handguns and a semi-automatic rifle, in and around Monmouth and Ocean counties, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced.
Javier Rodriguez-Valpais, 33, aka “Broly,” of Morganville, New Jersey, previously pleaded guilty by videoconference before U.S. District Judge Anne E. Thompson to an information charging him with one count of conspiracy to engage in firearms trafficking and one count of possession of a firearm by a previously convicted felon. Judge Thompson imposed the sentence today by videoconference.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
From May 2020 through September 2020, Javier Rodriguez-Valpais and others were members of a gun trafficking conspiracy that spanned from Florida to New Jersey. Rodriguez-Valpais sold a .223 caliber semi-automatic rifle to co-defendant Enrique Quijada, who in turn sold the rifle to an individual working at the direction and supervision of the FBI.
In addition to the prison term, Judge Thompson sentenced Rodriguez-Valpais to three years of supervised release.
U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited special agents of the FBI, Newark Division, and the Jersey Shore Safe Streets Task Force, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge George M. Crouch Jr.; and the Freehold Police Department, under the direction of Chief Craig Dispenza, with the investigation leading to the today’s sentencing. He also thanked the FBI Tampa Division, the ATF Newark and Tampa Field Divisions for their assistance in the investigation.
In July 2021 the U.S. Department of Justice launched five cross-jurisdictional strike forces to help reduce gun violence by disrupting illegal firearms trafficking in key regions across the country. Leveraging existing resources, the regional strike forces will better ensure sustained and focused coordination across jurisdictions and help stem the supply of illegally trafficked firearms from source cities, through other communities, and into five key market regions: New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area/Sacramento Region and Washington, D.C. According to gun trace data, a significant number of firearms recovered in the New York/northern New Jersey area originate from outside the area. The new strike force will help ensure sustained and focused coordination between law enforcement and prosecutors in the New York/northern New Jersey area with their counterparts in those other locations.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ian D. Brater of the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Criminal Division in Trenton.