Two Georgia Residents Plead Guilty To Firearms Trafficking
Xavier Simms and Bryce Martin Trafficked Firearms from Georgia to New York With a Third Co-Conspirator Who Shot and Critically Wounded an FBI Task Force Officer When Law Enforcement Attempted to Interdict
Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced today that XAVIER SIMMS and BRYCE MARTIN pled guilty to trafficking firearms from Georgia to New York and conspiring to do the same. SIMMS pled guilty before U.S. District Judge Philip M. Halpern, and MARTIN pled guilty before U.S. District Judge Vincent L. Briccetti.
U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said: “Today, Xavier Simms and Bryce Martin admitted to trafficking guns from Georgia to New York. Their actions contributed to the flow of illegal guns into New York, which too often results in gun violence in our communities. Today’s pleas reflect the commitment of this Office and our law enforcement partners to rid our streets of illegal guns and to prosecute gun traffickers to the fullest extent of the law.”
According to the Complaint, Information against each defendant, and other documents filed in federal court, as well as statements made in public court proceedings:
On April 20, 2022, members of the FBI Westchester Safe Streets Task Force and the City of Yonkers Police Department were investigating illegal firearms activity in the vicinity of Elm and Linden streets in Yonkers, New York. During the course of their investigation, they attempted to interdict members of the conspiracy, including XAVIER SIMMS, BRYCE MARTIN, and a third co-conspirator (“CC-1”). When law enforcement officers approached SIMMS, MARTIN, and CC-1 at a Yonkers deli, CC-1 shot and critically wounded an FBI Task Force Officer at close range. After that, an FBI Special Agent fired his gun at CC-1 and fatally wounded CC-1.
Law enforcement officers recovered four firearms in total from SIMMS, MARTIN, and CC-1 at the Yonkers deli, including a “Ghost Gun” — a type of firearm that is designed to evade law enforcement detection.
SIMMS and MARTIN had previously traveled together with CC-1 from Georgia to New York, arriving in Yonkers on or about April 19, 2022, with multiple firearms to sell. Evidence recovered from their cellphones showed that SIMMS and MARTIN both had access to specialized firearms, including machinegun-style weapons. Once in Yonkers, SIMMS, MARTIN, and CC-1 met with another individual (“Individual-1”) who received from them at least five firearms to sell on consignment.
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SIMMS, 22, of Covington, Georgia, and MARTIN, 23, of Hampton, Georgia, each pled guilty to one count of conspiring to traffic firearms, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 371, which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison, and one count of firearms trafficking, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 922(a)(1)(A) and 924(a)(1), which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.
SIMMS is scheduled to be sentenced on April 20, 2023. MARTIN is scheduled to be sentenced on January 11, 2023.
The statutory maximum sentences in this case are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendants will be determined by the judge.
Mr. Williams praised the outstanding investigative work of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the City of Yonkers Police Department. He also thanked the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office for its assistance in the investigation.
This case is being handled by the Office’s White Plains Division. Assistant United States Attorneys Shiva H. Logarajah and Kevin T. Sullivan are in charge of the prosecution.