Department of Justice
For Immediate Release
New Orleans Man Sentenced for Violating the Federal Gun Control Act
NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA – PAUL THOMAS, age 34, a resident of New Orleans, was sentenced on March 2, 2023 by United States District Judge Eldon E. Fallon on one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm, in violation of the Federal Gun Control Act, announced U.S. Attorney Duane A. Evans.
THOMAS had previously admitted to possessing a Glock pistol with an extended magazine and an AR-15 style rifle with double drum magazines at an auto-body shop he operated on Clark Street in New Orleans. New Orleans Police Department officers had conducted a search of the shop during a murder investigation. The officers found a .357 handgun, four rifles, a shotgun, four Glock .40 caliber handguns, several magazines, three digital scales, and various cell phones.
Judge Fallon sentenced THOMAS to 49 months in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons, to be followed by three years of supervised release after his term of imprisonment. Judge Fallon also ordered THOMAS to pay a mandatory special assessment fee of $100 and ordered that the guns he had possessed be forfeited to the United States.
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.
This case was investigated by the New Orleans Police Department, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the Drug Enforcement Administration. The prosecution is being handled by Assistant United States Attorney David Haller of the Violent Crime Unit.