NEWARK, N.J. — Two men were indicted by a Newark federal grand jury Friday for conspiring to sell seven firearms in New Jersey believed to have been stolen and smuggled out of Iraq after once belonging to the family of Saddam Hussein. The indictment follows an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).
David Phillip Ryan, 50, of Miami, and Carlos Quirola-Ordonez, aka "Julio Antonio Gonzalez," aka "Manny," 57, of New Milford, New Jersey, each face one count of conspiring to transport stolen firearms. Ryan also faces one count of transporting stolen property in interstate commerce.
According to the indictment and documents filed in Newark federal court:
In April 2012, HSI and ATF agents received information that seven firearms believed to have formerly belonged to members of the family of the late Iraqi president Saddam Hussein appraised to be worth $250,000 to $350,000 were available for sale. The weapons were kept in Florida while attempts were made by Ryan, Quirola-Ordonez and others to find buyers in New Jersey. During the course of the conspiracy, the seven firearms were shipped to New Jersey for viewing by potential buyers.
HSI and ATF agents subsequently seized the following firearms in the course of the investigation:
- One Coonan Arms Inc., .357 semi-automatic pistol, nickel finish, made in Saint Paul, Minnesota, with gold inlay and a medallion "QS" on left side grip (believed to be the initials of Qusay Saddam Hussein al-Tikriti, the second son of former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein);
- One Korth, .357 magnum revolver (six shot) stamped "Made in W. Germany Waffenfabrik Koth Ratzeburg/LBG," with gold inlay, black finish, wood grips, which displays a drawing of a wild boar;
- One Korth, .357 magnum, revolver (six shot) stamped "Made in W. Germany Waffenfabrik Koth Ratzeburg/LBG," with gold inlay, black finish, wood grips, which displays a drawing of a moose;
- One Chinese State Factories type 64 pistol, .32 caliber semi-auto pistol, black finish, with Yemen flag icon on both sides of grip and Arabic writing on the slide;
- Two Cosmi, 12 gauge shotguns, break top, single barrel;
- One Llama semi-automatic .45 ACP pistol with gold leaf and gold inlays, hand engraved, bearing the initials "QS".
The conspiracy count faced by Ryan and Quirola-Ordonez carries a maximum potential penalty of five years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine. The unlawful transportation of stolen property in interstate commerce count faced by Ryan carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.
Four men, including Ryan and Quirola-Ordonez, were originally charged with related offenses. The two other individuals, Howard Blumenthal and Karlo Sauer, previously pleaded guilty to their roles in this conspiracy and await sentencing.
The government is represented by Joyce M. Malliet of the U.S. Attorney's Office National Security Unit in Newark.
The charges and allegations contained in the indictment are merely accusations, and the defendants are considered innocent unless and until proven guilty.