Department of Justice
For Immediate Release
Former Owner of Shooting Range Pleads Guilty to Illegal Firearms Sales
RENO, Nev. – A man who held a federal firearms dealer’s license and owned an indoor shooting range in Reno, Nev., has pleaded guilty to charges that he unlawfully sold multiple firearms, including guns with obliterated serial numbers and machine guns, to undercover ATF agents at his business in April and May 2014, announced U.S. Attorney Daniel G. Bogden for the District of Nevada and ATF Special Agent in Charge Joseph M. Riehl.
James David Harwin, 59, of Reno, pleaded guilty on Thursday, Jan. 29, before U.S. District Judge Miranda M. Du to one count of transfer of a firearm in violation of the National Firearms Act. Harwin is scheduled to be sentenced on May 4, 2015, at 1:30 p.m., and he faces up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.
“Federally licensed firearms dealers are entrusted to uphold federal laws pertaining to the importation, manufacture and sales of firearms,” said U.S. Attorney Bogden. “We will be especially vigilant in our investigations and prosecutions of firearm dealers who consciously choose to violate these laws.”
“A licensed federal firearms dealer who intentionally circumvents the law and commits federal firearm violations will be held accountable,” said ATF Special Agent in Charge Riehl. “This is a serious crime and it is critical for FFL’s to comply with federal regulations to ensure the safety of our communities.”
According to the plea agreement, Harwin and Safe Shot LLC possessed a federal firearms license (FFL) to manufacture and sell firearms. Safe Shot LLC did business as the Safe Shot Indoor Shooting Range, located at 9425 Double R Boulevard in Reno. On or about April 17, 2014, Harwin unlawfully sold four handguns to two undercover ATF agents who told Harwin they were residents of Sacramento, Calif. One of the handguns had an obliterated serial number. On May 2, 2014, Harwin sold a machine gun with an obliterated serial number to the undercover ATF agents, and on May 29, 2014, Harwin unlawfully sold a Street Sweeper shotgun and three machine guns to the undercover agents. Harwin removed the serial numbers on one of the machine guns in the presence of the undercover agents.
This case was investigated by ATF and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Megan Rachow.