LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Following a three-day jury trial, a Las Vegas felon was found guilty of unlawful possession of a firearm that was discovered during a traffic stop, announced U.S. Attorney Dayle Elieson for the District of Nevada and Special Agent in Charge Jill A. Snyder for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
Omar Qazi, 30, was convicted of one count of felon in possession of a firearm. United States District Judge Andrew P. Gordon presided over the jury trial and scheduled sentencing for November 15, 2018. Qazi faces the maximum statutory penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
According to court documents, Qazi was stopped by a Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department officer for a traffic violation near East Harmon Avenue and Koval Lane. During the search of his vehicle, the officer found a loaded Smith & Wesson .22 caliber revolver in the front center console. Methamphetamine and marijuana were also recovered inside the vehicle. Evidence introduced at trial also included an audio recorded interview of Qazi where he admitted the firearm was his; and also two jail calls where he admitted to two different individuals that he knew he was a felon and should not have been driving around with a gun. Qazi’s DNA was also recovered from the firearm. Qazi has a prior felony conviction in Nevada for battery with substantial bodily harm and is prohibited from possessing a firearm.
The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Alexandra Michael and Patrick Burns prosecuted the case.
This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. Attorney General Jeff Sessions reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime. For more information about PSN, visit www.justice.gov/usao-nv