Courthouse Worker Charged with Illegally Selling Firearms to a Felon
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – A Jefferson City, Mo., man who supervises workers at the federal courthouse in Jefferson City has been charged in federal court with illegally selling 11 firearms to a convicted felon.
Victor Nahum Vargas, 40, of Jefferson City, was charged in a complaint filed in the U.S. District Court in Springfield, Mo., on Saturday, May 12, 2108, with selling firearms to a felon. Vargas, who is employed as the custodial supervisor at the Christopher S. Bond Courthouse in Jefferson City, remains in federal custody pending a detention hearing.
According to an affidavit filed in support of the federal criminal complaint, a confidential source who is a convicted felon contacted Vargas on April 24, 2018, by phone. During several recorded communications between the confidential source and Vargas that occurred between April 24, 2018, and April 25, 2018, Vargas allegedly agreed to sell the confidential source 10 firearms for $7,500. According to the affidavit, Vargas knew that the confidential source is a convicted felon who is therefore prohibited by law from purchasing or possessing any firearms or ammunition.
On April 30, 2018, the confidential source contacted Vargas. During the recorded conversation, the affidavit says, Vargas agreed to sell the confidential source an additional rifle for $800. Vargas allegedly agreed to sell the confidential source 11 firearms for $8,100.
Law enforcement officers conducted surveillance on a firearms dealer in Jefferson City on May 9, 2018. According to the affidavit, they observed Vargas carry two boxes of firearms from the store, put them in his car and take them to his residence.
Vargas met with the confidential source on Friday, May 11, 2018, the affidavit says. Vargas allegedly sold 11 firearms to the confidential source for $8,100. Immediately after the transaction, Vargas was placed under arrest. The 11 firearms purchased by the confidential source were turned over to the officers, who also found an additional handgun and ammunition when they searched Vargas’s vehicle.
The charge contained in this complaint is simply an accusation, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charge must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Lawrence E. Miller. It was investigated by the Chicago, Ill., Police Department, the Jefferson City, Mo., Police Department Community Action Team and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.