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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, April 12, 2018

Three People Charged With Interstate Gun Trafficking Conspiracy Spanning From Virginia To New Jersey

NEWARK, N.J. – A Virginia woman who is an active-duty member of the U.S. Navy and a New Jersey couple have been charged with conspiring to illegally purchase five semi-automatic handguns bound for New Jersey, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced today.

Tesora Amanda Cortes Trejorojas, 23, of Norfolk, Virginia; Azia Sinclair, 28, of Newark; and Shyheim Tyson, a/k/a “Shy,” 22, of Newark, are charged by a superseding complaint with one count of conspiring to transport and receive in New Jersey firearms purchased and obtained outside the State of New Jersey. Sinclair had previously been charged by complaint filed in Newark federal court on March 12, 2018, for receiving a firearm, which had been shipped or transported in interstate commerce.

Trejorojas was arrested this morning and will appear this in Norfolk, Virginia, federal court. Sinclair and Tyson will appear on April 26, 2018, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Mark Falk in Newark federal court.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

In November 2017, Trejorojas and Sinclair allegedly engaged in numerous text messages with each other planning for Trejorojas to purchase firearms in Virginia, which Sinclair and her boyfriend, Tyson, would then transport back to New Jersey.

On Nov. 11, 2017, Sinclair and Tyson drove from New Jersey to Trejorojas’ residence in Norfolk. The three of them then went to a gun store in Norfolk, where Trejorojas purchased five semiautomatic handguns, as well as 200 rounds of ammunition, with cash provided by Sinclair and Tyson. The next day, Sinclair and Tyson drove back to New Jersey with the five handguns and ammunition.

Approximately five hours after Sinclair and Tyson arrived back in New Jersey, an individual was arrested in Orange, New Jersey, after police officers responded to the sound of gunshots. During the arrest, police officers recovered one of the five handguns that Sinclair and Tyson had transported from Virginia to New Jersey.

In March 2018, law enforcement executed a search warrant on Sinclair’s residence in Newark, and found another of the guns that Sinclair and Tyson had transported from Virginia to New Jersey in November 2017.

The conspiracy to deal in firearms without a license carries a maximum potential penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited special agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge John B. Devito, Newark Field Division, and Special Agent in Charge Thomas L. Chittum III, Washington Field Division, with the investigation leading to today’s charges. He also thanked the N.J. State Police; the Newark Department of Public Safety: and Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) in Norfolk for their assistance.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan W. Romankow of the Violent Crimes Unit in Newark.

The charges and allegations in the complaint are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Defense counsel:
Trejorojas: TBD
Sinclair: Linda Foster Esq., Assistant Federal Public Defender
Tyson: TBD

Topic(s): 
Firearms Offenses
Component(s): 
Press Release Number: 
18-149
Updated April 12, 2018