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Firearms, Ammunition & Explosives
04/06/2012

HSI, ATF and local partners join forces to nab 9 in multi-agency operation against illegal selling of firearms

HSI, ATF and local partners join forces to nab 9 in multi-agency operation against illegal selling of firearms
HSI, ATF and local partners join forces to nab 9 in multi-agency operation against illegal selling of firearms
HSI, ATF and local partners join forces to nab 9 in multi-agency operation against illegal selling of firearms

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — Nine of 11 individuals indicted for illegally selling firearms were arrested Wednesday in four different municipalities in Puerto Rico. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) led the investigation in which the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), and the Puerto Rico Police Department (PRPD) also participated. Three individuals remain at-large.

During the month of March, various federal grand juries indicted 11 individuals in five different indictments and one complaint as a result of several investigations conducted in collaboration between HSI, ATF, and PRPD, for violating federal firearms laws. All defendants are facing firearms and ammunition forfeiture allegations.

Michael Rios-Gonzalez is facing several charges for selling without a license an AR15 rifle without a serial number, a .40 caliber Glock pistol, and a fully automatic 9 caliber Smith and Wesson pistol. In addition, Rios-Gonzalez is also facing charges for possession of narcotics with intent to distribute and possession of a firearm during and in relation to a drug trafficking offense.

Tomas Santana-Acevedo and Jose Hernandez-Santana are charged as felons in possession of a firearm. These two individuals, along with Luis Serrano-Ayala, illegally sold two 9 caliber Glock pistols, an AK-47 assault rifle, a .45 caliber Smith and Wesson pistol, a Herstal FN pistol aka "cop killer," and a .45 caliber Colt Double Eagle. Hector Rios-Perez is charged in a criminal complaint for illegally selling a Remington 12 gauge shotgun and an AK-47 assault rifle.

Jonathan Delgado-Flores is charged in a one-count indictment for illegally selling two .45 caliber Glock pistols, a .40 caliber Smith and Wesson pistol, a 9 caliber Glock pistol, and a .45 caliber Taurus pistol.

Jose Cora-Reyes, aka Pelota, and Rafael Castellano-Benitez, are charged as felons in possession of firearms. These two defendants, along with Orlando Melendez-Crucette, are also charged with illegally selling a Keltec pistol, a stolen .45 caliber Smith and Wesson pistol, and a .357 caliber Smith and Wesson revolver.

On a different indictment, Jose Ortiz-Roman, aka Kike, is charged as a felon in possession of a .40 caliber Glock pistol, and of selling this firearm without a license.

ICE encourages the public to report suspected weapons and narcotics smuggling and related information by calling 1-866-DHS-2ICE or by completing its online tip form. Both are staffed around the clock by investigators. For more information, visit www.ice.gov.