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Connecticut man admits to illegally purchasing and possessing body armor

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - David B. Fein, U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that Waheed Islam, also known as "Walter Missouri, Jr.," 43, of Manchester, Conn., pleaded guilty today before U.S. District Judge Robert N. Chatigny in Hartford, Conn., to one count of possession of body armor by a violent felon. This guilty plea is the result of an investigation conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and other federal law enforcement agencies.

According to court documents and statements made in court, Waheed Islam placed an order with an overseas company for a bullet proof vest designed to withstand gunfire from a 9mm pistol. Federal agents learned of the shipment, intercepted the package and monitored its delivery to the defendant's Manchester residence on Dec. 6, 2010, whereupon Waheed Islam accepted delivery of the package. A short time later, agents executed a court-authorized search warrant at the residence and found the package containing the bullet proof vest on the premises.

Islam has previously been convicted of multiple felony crimes of violence, including first degree assault and first degree robbery. It is a violation of federal law for a person previously convicted of a violent felony to possess a bullet proof vest.

Judge Chatigny has scheduled sentencing for April 8, 2011, at which time Islam faces a maximum possible term of imprisonment of three years and a fine of up to $250,000. Islam has been detained since his arrest on Dec. 6, 2010.

This matter was investigated by ICE HSI, FBI, Customs and Border Protection, Connecticut State Police, Manchester Police Department and the State of Connecticut Office of Adult Probation.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Henry K. Kopel and Stephen B. Reynolds.