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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Texas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, February 21, 2019

Conroe Man Ordered to Prison for Making “Ghost Guns”

HOUSTON – A 30-year-old resident of Conroe has been sentenced to federal prison for possessing and selling homemade machine guns, announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick. Michael Lee Price pleaded guilty Oct. 5, 2018, admitting he illegally possessed machine guns, possessed unregistered machine guns and engaged in the business of selling firearms without a license. 

Today, U.S. District Judge Ewing Werlein Jr. ordered price to serve a total of 37 months in prison to be immediately followed by three years of supervised release. In handing down the sentence, the court noted the seriousness of his crime in making fully automatic machine guns and selling to criminal elements given the amount of death and destruction they can cause. 

From June 18, 2018, to July 17, 2018, Price negotiated with an undercover officer to sell fully automatic M-16 style machine guns that he made from gun parts he bought online. The evidence showed Price was in the business of purchasing the gun parts to construct an M-16 style rifle then used his own machinery and templates to make the rifles fully automatic machine guns.

Such machine guns are known as “ghost guns” because they have no identifying information and are hard to trace.

Price sold a total of 14 fully automatic machine guns to the undercover officer.  Authorities seized all of the machine guns and confirmed to be fully-automatic machine guns.

Price has been and will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.  

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Richard Bennett prosecuted the case.

Topic(s): 
Firearms Offenses
Component(s): 
Updated February 21, 2019