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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Nevada

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Former Felon Sentenced To 6 1/2 Years In Prison For Unlawful Possession Of Firearms Including Automatic Rifle

LAS VEGAS, Nev. – A five-time felon who posted photos on Instagram of himself shooting firearms, including an automatic rifle, was sentenced today to 77 months in federal prison and three years of supervised release, announced U.S. Attorney Dayle Elieson for the District of Nevada.

Jack Benjamin Hessiani, 39, of Ventura, California, was convicted of one count of felon in possession of a firearm following a three-day jury trial in December 2017. United States District Judge Larry R. Hicks presided over the trial and sentencing hearing.

According to evidence presented at trial and related court documents, Hessiani posted on his Instagram account photos of himself holding and firing machine guns at the Battlefield Vegas gun range in Las Vegas. At the gun range, he signed a waiver falsely representing that he did not have any criminal history that would prevent him from legally using firearms. In fact, he had five prior felony convictions, to include California felony convictions for Threats to Commit a Crime Resulting in Death; Stalking; and Inflicting Corporal Injury on Spouse / Cohabitant / Dating Partner.

The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the U.S. Department of Labor Office of the Inspector General. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Phillip N. Smith, Jr. and Alexandra Michael 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.

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Topic(s): 
Firearms Offenses
Component(s): 
Updated May 2, 2018