For Immediate Release
Naples Man Pleads Guilty to Possessing Firearm During Drug Trafficking Crime
Fort Myers, Florida – United States Attorney Roger B. Handberg announces that Michael Karp (50, Naples) today pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime. Karp faces a minimum penalty of five years, up to life, in federal prison.
According to court documents, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) began investigating Karp in 2022. The investigation included Karp meeting an undercover ATF agent, who was posing as a drug dealer needing protection during drug deals. Karp indicated to the agent that he participated in that type of work. According to the plea agreement, on May 23, 2023, Karp met at a hotel in Naples believing that he was going to protect the sale of five pounds of methamphetamine. The drug transaction actually involved the sale of faux methamphetamine between two undercover ATF agents. Karp stood by with a pistol as the transaction took place.
This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Mark Morgan.
This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.