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Press Release

Final Defendant Pleads Guilty In Gun Trafficking Ring Stretching From Ohio To New York

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of New York

CONTACT: Barbara Burns
PHONE: (716) 843-5817
FAX #: (716) 551-3051

BUFFALO, N.Y. - U.S. Attorney Trini E. Ross announced today that Ricky Turner, 51, of Ashtabula, Ohio, pleaded guilty before Chief U.S. District Judge Elizabeth A. Wolford to aiding and abetting a fictitious written statement with respect to a material fact in the sale of a firearm. The charge carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Joshua A. Violanti, who is handling the case, stated that on October 19, 2017, Turner assisted an individual identified as D.F. in the purchase of a firearm from an Ohio sporting goods store. D.F falsely stated on the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives Form 4473, Firearms Transaction Record, that she was the actual buyer acquiring the firearm. In fact, D.F. was acting only at the direction of Turner, who provided money for the purchase of the firearm. D.F. completed and signed the ATF paperwork and checked “yes,” acknowledging that she was the actual purchaser of the firearm. D.F. conducted other similar transactions on behalf of Turner, receiving $75-$100 per firearm to conduct the transactions. Turner then sold the firearms for a profit to individuals in the Buffalo area. Turner has never been issued a Federal Firearms License that would permit him to sell, receive, or transport firearms in interstate commerce. In fact, Turner is prohibited under both Ohio and federal law from possessing a firearm due to a federal felony conviction.

Turner is one of eight defendants charged and convicted in this case.

The plea is the result of an investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge John B. Devito.

Sentencing will be scheduled at a later date.

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Updated February 23, 2022

Firearms Offenses