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Justice News

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

Friday, November 2, 2018

U.S. Attorney’s Office And Law Enforcement Partners Seize 352 Firearms In Fiscal Year 2018

NEWARK, N.J. – U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced today that the District of New Jersey seized 352 firearms as part of criminal prosecutions in Fiscal Year 2018.

The District of New Jersey worked jointly with its law enforcement partners, including the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the FBI, Homeland Security Investigations, the U.S. Marshal’s Service, and numerous agencies of the State of New Jersey.

“As part of our mission to keep the public safe from violent crime, the United States Attorney’s Office has removed more than 300 firearms from the hands of criminals in the last year alone,” U.S. Attorney Carpenito said. “Each one of these firearms represented a clear and present danger to the safety of our citizens, and we are proud to work with our federal, state, and local law enforcement partners to reduce the threat of armed criminals in New Jersey.”

“Taking these guns off the streets is proof that Attorney General Sessions’ initiatives to fight gun violence are successful and are having an impact,” ATF Newark Field Division Special Agent in Charge John B. DeVito said. “The use of Crime Gun Intelligence is instrumental in achieving these objectives, and ATF remains committed to removing the firearms that endanger our communities.”

During the 2018 fiscal year, firearms seizures in the District of New Jersey included:

• Nine AR-15 type assault rifles
• More than a dozen other “long guns,” including shot guns and rifles, and even an M2 machine gun
• More than 300 pistols and revolvers

“To keep New Jersey streets safe, the FBI along with our local and state partners will aggressively pursue the seizure and forfeiture of guns from violent criminals and convicted felons,” Newark FBI Special Agent in Charge Gregory W. Ehrie said.

“Transnational criminal organizations operating in New Jersey rely on firearms as a tool to further their criminal activity,” Brian Michael, Special Agent in Charge, HSI Newark, said. “HSI and all our law enforcement partners are determined to keep these weapons out of the hands of dangerous criminals that pose a threat to public safety and the special agents/officers that pursue them each and every day.”

“When we remove crime guns and the criminals who carry them from our communities, we attack the root of gun violence,” N.J. Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal said. “The 352 guns forfeited by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in collaboration with law enforcement partners across New Jersey represent 352 guns that will never kill or maim a resident or one of our law enforcement officers. We work best when we work together, and our collaborative efforts to prosecute gun crimes and share intelligence about illegal guns trafficked into New Jersey are having a strong impact.”

“We are pleased to have partnered with the U.S. Attorney’s Office the recovery of over 300 firearms this year,” Newark Public Safety Director Anthony F. Ambrose said. “We will remain vigilant in working with U.S. Attorney Carpenito and his law enforcement partners in the confiscation of illegal firearms with an aim towards an ongoing reduction of violent crime.”

“U.S. Attorney Carpenito’s unwavering leadership to reducing gun violence has facilitated a significant statistical decrease in the number of gun homicides and firearm related aggravated assault incidents in Camden,” Camden County Police Chief J. Scott Thomson said. “Removing violent criminals and their guns from the streets with the promise of federal prosecution continues to serve as a major deterrent that makes neighborhoods safer.” 

The U.S. Attorneys’ Offices, along with their law enforcement partners, are responsible for seizing and forfeiting firearms that are involved in criminal activities. Many of these forfeitures result when previously-convicted felons continue to carry firearms, and are convicted of being felons in possession of weapons, pursuant to Section 922(g) of Title 18 of the United States Code. The law requires that these firearms be forfeited.

Office and Personnel Updates
Press Release Number: 
Updated November 2, 2018