U.S. Department of Justice
United States Attorney
District of Arizona
District of Arizona
For Immediate Release
Thursday, July 28, 2011
Dennis K. Burke, United States Attorney
Contact: Sandy Raynor, Public Affairs
Tucson Firearms Dealer Indicted and Arrested on Multiple Federal Firearms Charges
TUCSON, Ariz. – A federal grand jury in Tucson returned a 9-count indictment on Wednesday against Michael James Gesty, 46, of Tucson, for violations of making machineguns, making false statements on an application for a federal firearms license, making false statements during purchase of firearms, failure to keep records of firearm sales, and possession of firearms and ammunition by a drug user. Gesty was arrested by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives today on a warrant issued as a result of the indictment, and is currently detained pending an initial appearance scheduled tomorrow.
The indictment alleges that Gesty, a federally licensed firearms dealer, doing business as Spartan Armory and Black Wolf Weapons, instructed and assisted others in making several fully automatic machinegun rifles. The indictment also alleges that Gesty, a habitual user of marijuana, made a false statement when applying for his federal firearms license by stating that he was not a user of marijuana or any controlled substance, and unlawfully possessed several firearms and ammunition both at his residence and business while being a user of marijuana. The indictment further alleges that Gesty failed to keep required records of several firearms sales he made through his business, and that he also instructed and encouraged others to make false statements in Gesty's business records.
A conviction for making machineguns and possession of firearms and ammunition by a drug user carries a maximum penalty of 10 years, a $250,000 fine or both. A conviction for making false statements on an application for a federal firearms license, making false statements during purchase of firearms, and failure to keep records of firearm sales carries a maximum penalty of five years, a $250,000 fine or both. In determining an actual sentence, U.S. District Judge Collins will consult the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, which provide appropriate sentencing ranges. The judge, however, is not bound by those guidelines in determining a sentence. An indictment is simply the method by which a person is charged with criminal activity and raises no inference of guilt. An individual is presumed innocent until competent evidence is presented to a jury that establishes guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
The investigation preceding the indictment was conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. The prosecution is being handled by Angela W. Woolridge, Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Arizona, Tucson.
CASE NUMBER: CR-11-2650-TUC
RELEASE NUMBER: 2011-161(Gesty)
For more information on the U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of Arizona, visit http://www.justice.gov/usao/az/